Smitherman makes it official

Former MPP files his nomination papers

It’s official. After months of talking about it George Smitherman has registered as a candidate for mayor of Toronto at 10:30 a.m. this morning.

“A vote for my campaign is a vote for a city that works,” Smitherman said at a press conference following his registration. “I’m going to bring new energy and new direction and leadership to the challenges that confront Toronto.

“We have a lot of work to do to restore opportunities for jobs for people in our city,” said Smitherman.

While Smitherman has a reputation of being adversarial with other politicians who don’t share his visions he said he’ll actively work with a broad range of colleagues.

“I will build a rainbow coalition of supporters. Councillor Pam McConnell is an example of someone who will work along side me. And certainly expect to demonstrate through the course of the campaign a platform and agenda for action that unites councillors,” said Smitherman, who was chief of staff for former mayor Barbara Hall.

“What Barbara Hall taught me is that very often if you spend the extra effort at the front end developing a consensus around a game, action plan that you have more likelihood of moving that agenda forward,” he said.

Smitherman said that he plans to unveil his policy details soon but did give some hints to his priorities including creating and retaining jobs in Toronto, easing gridlock and expanding transit.

“At the heart of it any level of government much be focused on what its core obligations are.”

Until earlier this month Smitherman was the MPP for Toronto Centre and had served in many high profile cabinet positions in Dalton McGuinty’s Liberal government including as minister of health and deputy premier. While he grew up in Etobicoke he currently lives downtown with his husband Christopher Peloso.

About this article:

By: Kris Scheuer
Posted: Jan 8 2010 12:21 pm
Filed in: NEWS
Edition: Toronto