Considered a powerful member of Ontario's Provincial government, George Smitherman declared his candidacy for Toronto mayor today
The race to see who will replace David Miller as Toronto's next mayor is heating up. This afternoon MPP George Smitherman, the powerful Minister of Energy & Infrastructure, as well as being Deputy Premier in Dalton McGuinty's government and an openly gay public figure, has announced he's running for mayor.
"I've taken myself out of the realm of speculation and moved into the realm of certainty. I want to take that track record of getting things done to my city," said Smitherman to the Toronto Star.
The speculation had gone on for weeks, prompting calls for Smitherman to make up his mind. Considered an outspoken and sometimes boisterous public figure, Smitherman's departure from McGuinty's cabinet comes at an awkward time with the recent loss of David Caplan as Minister of Health.
Says the Globe and Mail, "In a cabinet made up mostly of mild-mannered personalities, Mr. Smitherman's departure will leave a big void."
Smitherman paints himself as "a candidate of the broad centre," Smitherman pledged to "build a campaign with people from all parties." It has also been speculated that former Ontario Conservative Party leader John Tory is also looking at the job of Mayor of Toronto, but to date he has not confirmed this.