McGuinty confident as Ontario campaign ends

Ontario voters head to polls as Liberals ride crest of popular support

Ontario Liberal Leader Dalton McGuinty went into the heart of Tory territory on Wednesday looking like a politician on a crest of support.

About 120 supporters gathered across the street from PC cabinet minister Jim Flaherty's constituency office in Whitby and chanted, "Dalton! Dalton!"

"I am proud of the campaign that we have been running," McGuinty said.

Voters cast their ballots on Thursday to choose a new government. Opinon polls have been showing the Liberals in a commanding lead and likely to beat the Conservatives.

Tory Leader Ernie Eves has stumbled in recent days, taking a nasty tone in comments about the Liberal leader, despite saying in a televised debated that that sort of politics "has no place" in his campaign.

On Wednesday, he conceded that saying McGuinty has a "pointy head" was inappropriate.

By the time Eves took back the remark, McGuinty was using it against him. Joking with the hosts on a Toronto radio morning show, he said, "What if I spear you with my head?"

Eves attacked the Liberal platform, warning the Toronto Board of Trade: "Hold on to your wallets and be prepared for a $3.2-billion whack after Oct. 2, because that's what's going to happen when Mr. McGuinty becomes the government."

NDP Leader Howard Hampton predicted his party would surprise people by doing better than expected.

When the election was called last month, the standings in the legislature were:

  • Tories: 56
  • Liberals: 36
  • NDP: 9
  • Ind.: 1
  • Vacant: 1