Upcoming mayoral election will be ‘bloodbath,’ Ford says

ABOVE: Upcoming mayor election will be a “bloodbath,” Mayor Rob Ford says. Jackson Proskow reports. 

TORONTO – Mayor Rob Ford said Monday that candidates looking to challenge him in the upcoming mayoral election can expect a tough race.

“It’s going to be a bloodbath,” he said at city hall. “They’re coming after me and I’m sure they’re going to bring up everything, so we’ll just bring up everything.”
He also offered plenty of sports clichés, advising other potential challengers to “keep your head up and make sure the chin strap is on tight.”

Watch: Mayor Rob Ford says the upcoming mayoral election will be “a bloodbath”

In an interview on Global Toronto’s The Morning Show, TTC Chair Karen Stintz said she chose to declare her candidacy early to give voters a chance to get to know her better.

“I want to take the time to introduce myself to the city, to talk about my vision for the Toronto, to again make sure people understand and have confidence that I’m best reflecting their interest,” she said.

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Stintz admits she is looking forward to the race and expects a hard fought, clean campaign.

“Because we have the Gardiner, we have the transit file, keeping taxes low, bringing jobs into the city, there’s certainly enough issues for us to discuss that I hope it stays about policy,” said Stintz.

Greg Sorbara, a former member of Dalton McGuinty’s cabinet, tells Global News that he helped convince Stintz to make the jump.

“As far as Mayor Ford is concerned, one of the things that I admired in Karen Stintz is her ability to stand up to him, particularly when his tactics were, to use Paul Ainslie’s words, a little bit bullyish,” Sorbara said.

WHAT DO YOU THINK: What are her chances of winning the mayor’s seat?

Stintz was appointed TTC Chair back in 2010 by Ford but their relationship has since cooled, especially over transit issues.

Despite voting in favour of extending the Bloor-Danforth subway line in Scarborough a month ago, a position Ford supported, Stintz ignited a firestorm last year when she championed the light rail option instead.

Still, Stintz says she and Ford have the same focus when it comes to managing the city.

“I think it speaks to his fiscal agenda, people in this city are still concerned about pocketbook issues. They want to make sure we have a liveable city and there is an appeal to his fiscal agenda. It’s one I’ve supported as well,” she said.

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VIDEO: TTC Chair Karen Stintz talks about entering the Toronto mayoral race on Global’s The Morning Show.

Ford has already said he will run for re-election and some say the battle for the mayoral seat will likely intensify with both of them in the mix.

“There are a lot of centrists, centre-rightists I should say, who are very very uncomfortable and embarrassed by Ford that he’s carrying the right wing banner,” said University of Toronto politcal science professor Nelson Wiseman.

Ford mentioned on his weekly show on Toronto radio station Newstalk 1010 that he can’t wait for the mayoral campaign to start and is “absolutely salivating” to defend his record in the city’s election.

The Ward 16 Elginton-Lawrence councillor was first elected in 2003 and also sits on the City’s Planning and Growth Management Committee, the City’s Employee and Labour Relations Committee and the City’s Striking Committee.

Stintz is expected to step down as TTC Chair once she officially declares her candidacy in the new year.

Candidates can register to run on Jan. 2 with the election vote on Oct.27.

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-with a report from Cindy Pom

WATCH: TTC Chair Karen Stintz has officially thrown her hat into the ring to become the next mayor of Toronto. Global’s City Hall reporter Jackson Proskow has more