Toronto

Keesmaat and Tory trade barbs amid special council debate

Jennifer Keesmaat and John Tory are attacking one another Monday amid a special city council debate on whether or not to challenge Doug Ford’s council cut.

Mayor's top rival calls him weak, while his campaign attacks her for being opportunisitic

Toronto mayoral candidates John Tory and Jennifer Keesmaat are attacking one another Monday as council holds a special meeting on the province's decision to reduce the number of wards. (Canadian Press/CBC)

Jennifer Keesmaat and John Tory are attacking one another Monday amid a special city council debate on whether or not to challenge Doug Ford's council cut.

Keesmaat, in an email statement, said Ford only pushed ahead with the dramatic plan, which reduced the number of wards from 47 to 25 ahead of the Oct. 22 election, because he knew Tory would allow it.

"If we had a stronger mayor in the chair, Doug Ford would have thought twice before swooping in and upending our elections," said Keesmaat, who filed her nomination papers the day after Ford's announcement.

Within an hour of Keesmaat's media blast, Tory's team responded.

Luke Robertson, Tory's campaign manager, accused Keesmaat of being opportunistic.

"Mayor John Tory is leading the City and the Council while Ms. Keesmaat is trying to play politics," Robertson's email said.

The statement continued to criticize Keesmaat for not accomplishing more at the Creative Housing Society, an organization focused on building affordable housing that she'd recently joined, while highlighting her past support for Tory.  

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