Andrea Horwath: Gassing up in Oakville
Coming off a marathon trip through northern Ontario, NDP Leader Andrea Horwath is sticking to the Toronto area on Friday. She heads first to the Ontario Sheet Metal Workers’ Training Centre in Oakville for a policy announcement.
Campaign staff wouldn’t confirm what she is set to announce. But for the past while – and whenever anyone asks her what she thinks of the Liberals’ plan to give employers $10,000 for hiring immigrants, which is often – she’s been hinting at a jobs plan in the offing. She’s been short on specifics, saying little more than that she doesn’t endorse Mr. McGuinty’s strategy. But her hinted proposal sounds awfully similar: Financial incentives for employers to hire and train their employees, and keep equipment up to date.
Oakville will be an interesting race: Incumbent Kevin Flynn broke with the Liberals’ party line in opposing a gas-fired power plant in the affluent enclave, and he had a hand in eventually cancelling the plant altogether. While it will be interesting to see how opposition parties treat this (and how Oakville residents feel about the Liberals), this likely isn’t the NDP’s riding. The party came in fourth in 2007, and candidate Lesley Sprague has never run in the province before.
Next stop is the Islamic Forum of Canada in Brampton. While both Brampton-Springdale and Brampton-West appear to be Liberal-Tory races, the NDP has a strong shot in Bramalea-Gore-Malton: Candidate Jagmeet Singh came within spitting distance of Bal Gopal, who won the riding for the federal Conservatives in May.
Tim Hudak: Trumpeting the trades
Fresh off his first overnight trip of the campaign, Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak will stay closer to home on Friday.
Mr. Hudak and his team spent Wednesday night in Ottawa, which meant he missed his daughter’s first day of school and was forced to campaign without his up-till-then ever-present wife by his side.
He opted for a later start to his official day, heading to speak to the Economic Club of Canada at noon in downtown Toronto. He’ll take some questions from the media, who will no doubt want to ask about a poll that shows his party behind in the early goings, before climbing back on the bus and heading for the Pre-Apprenticeship Training Institute, where he will talk about his plan to create 200,000 additional spaces for trades apprentices. The college is privately run and is intended to give students the training they need to land a coveted apprenticeship.
He will end his day in Liberal-held Mississauga at a rally with supporters, just a few days after Liberal Leader Dalton McGuinty attracted Mayor Hazel McCallion to his event and sparked talk about which leader would be better for municipalities. No word if she’ll attend.
Dalton McGuinty: Bollywood, here I come
It will be a busy day for Dalton McGuinty around the GTA. He will do one media avail after an event at 10 a.m.
He will begin the day by visiting a plant that makes solar panels, Flextronics, in Newmarket. This will allow him to boast once again about all the jobs the Liberals’ clean-energy policies are creating. He’ll be joined by Christina Bisanz, the Liberal candidate who lost the riding of Newmarket-Aurora in 2007 in a tight race with Tory Frank Klees. The riding tends to switch back and forth between the two parties.
At 3 p.m., Mr. McGuinty will drop in on Bollywood star Akshay Kumar and Alliance CEO Victor Loewy in downtown Toronto. This will be a reminder that he was the leader who wooed Bollywood in 2009 to host their International Film Academy ceremonies here. The event drew tens of thousands of visitors to Toronto earlier this year and helped Mr. McGuinty build support in the province’s large Indo-Canadian population.
He wraps up the day at 8 p.m. by visiting a Muslim organization in Etobicoke.