Some question why councillors supporting Bailao on impaired charge
A Toronto city councillor and the head of Mothers Against Drunk Driving are both questioning why Toronto politicians are supporting Coun. Ana Bailao after she was charged with impaired driving.
Bailao was pulled over by police near Bathurst and Harbord streets early Tuesday morning after officers observed erratic driving.
She was charged with drinking and driving.
On Wednesday Bailao said she intends to plead not guilty to the charges against her.
When she made her statement to the media she was surrounded by other councillors who said they supported her.
"She had a bad night. She regrets it. She apologized and it's time to move on," said Coun. Doug Ford.
"We are required, invited, to so many places with a lot of alcohol and this is a wake up call for any elected official," said Coun. Paula Fletcher.
But Andrew Murie, CEO of MADD, says it is "deplorable" that Bailao is pleading not guilty — and fellow Coun. Paul Ainslie said Thursday he found the decision of some councillors to come out in support of Bailao hard to understand.
"I don't think anybody should be supporting [her]," said Ainslie. "You know some of my colleagues said they were standing behind her for moral support, well you know she been charged with D.U.I., that's a very serious offence."
After some reflection, Doug Ford was tempering his comments as well.
"I don't condone whatsoever drinking and driving," he said on Thursday.
Bailao will appear in court on Dec. 3.