Toronto Mayor Rob Ford's brother and campaign manager greeted news of John Tory's decision to enter the mayoral race with an attack on the businessman and radio host's record.
"I think Rob has a record to stand on. John doesn't have a record to stand on and we're going to address that moving forward," Councillor Doug Ford, who is running his brother's re-election campaign, told Newstalk 1010.
"We look forward to the 110 debates that are going to come out on some of his views and there's going to be a huge difference between John Tory, Rob Ford, Olivia Chow and Karen Stintz."
Mr. Tory, who lost the 2003 mayoral race to David Miller and served as leader of the Ontario Progressive Conservative party, enters the municipal election campaign as a perceived front runner. NDP MP Olivia Chow is also widely expected to join the race to challenge scandal-plagued Mayor Ford. The mayoral field also includes former Toronto Transit Commission Chair Karen Stintz and former city budget chief David Soknacki.
Councillor Ford also charged that Mr. Tory isn't a fiscal conservative, warning that he supports raising taxes. Mr. Tory says he plans to keep taxes low.
The Ford team's attack on Mr. Tory, who is ending his radio show on Newstalk 1010, offers a taste of their campaign strategy leading up to the Oct. 27 vote.
Earlier this month, after Mr. Tory advised women who want to get ahead to take up golf, and cited studies that claim women don't ask for pay raises as often as men, Councillor Ford slammed him as "chauvinistic." He also called Mr. Tory – a former CEO of Rogers Media – "one of the elites of the 1 per cent."
Ms. Stintz said she wasn't annoyed that Mr. Tory formally registered on the same day she planned to, telling Newstalk 1010: "It's a campaign. And I think it's great for the city that there are people that are willing to step up and lead this city."
Ms. Stintz, a long-time city councillor, acknowledged that she and Mr. Tory share similar perspectives. "There's a lot of similarities I would say in our campaign. He thinks the downtown relief [subway] line is important, as I do I. But again, having 10 years at city council and getting things done I think will be able to demonstrate to voters that I can deliver on the priorities."