Incumbents win big in GTA elections

John Tory, Mike Layton, Matt Mahoney, Bonnie Crombie cruise to victory, newcomer Jennifer McKelvie wins by narrow margin

Incumbents win big in GTA elections

It’s decision day in the GTA, and voters have chosen incumbent Mayor John Tory to run Toronto for four more years. On the council side, incumbents Mike Layton and Matt Mahoney won out in University—Rosedale and Mississauga Ward 8 respectively, while newcomer Jennifer McKelvie prevailed over incumbent Neethan Shan in Scarborough—Rouge Park.

Mayoral results
With 1786 out of 1800 polls reporting, Tory is projected to win with 63.55 per cent of the vote, easily surpassing runner up Jennifer Keesmaat, who is currently at only 23.52 per cent.

Tonight’s result was also a large improvement on Tory’s 2014 win, when he received 40.3 per cent.

Tory made affordability the central theme of his campaign, with his website reading that he has a “commitment to keeping Toronto affordable.” After receiving criticism for how he handled the nearly 100 homeless deaths in Toronto in 2017, Tory has said that he will create 400 more spaces in shelters.

In Mississauga, incumbent Bonnie Crombie is projected to win by a large margin, with 349 out of 692 polls reporting that she will receive 75.6 per cent of the vote. Runner-up Kevin J. Johnston came away with only 13.5 per cent. Crombie’s win was also an improvement from her 2014 showing, when she won 68 per cent.

During her time in office, Crombie started initiatives such as ‘Making Room for the Middle,’ which aims to keep housing affordable for middle-class families and create a safer city.

Mike Layton, the incumbent councillor for Ward 19 Trinity-Spadina, won big in the new Ward 11 University—Rosedale against six other challengers.

Layton, who has been in office since 2010, won 69.56 per cent of the votes with all polls reporting, while runner-up Joyce Rowlands came away with only 13.16 per cent.

Part of Layton’s platform was that local government needs to “get back in the business of building affordable housing.”

“Sometimes we call things affordable that really aren’t because our definition of affordable is average market rent across the city,” said Layton.

Matt Mahoney, incumbent councillor for Ward 8, is projected to win re-election with a landslide 80 per cent. Mahoney has been in office since 2014.

Mahoney hopes to create a transit pass with one fee, and he said that his office has met with Mayor Bonnie Crombie, the University of Toronto Mississauga Students’ Union, and the university administration to discuss collaborating with other municipalities.

In one of the closest races of the night, incumbent Councillor Neethan Shan lost to former U of T student and UTSC Campus Council member Jennifer McKelvie.

With all polls reporting, McKelvie won 41.01 per cent — 11,523 votes — while Shan won 38.69 per cent — 10,872 votes.
McKelvie is an environmental geoscientist who headed the Scarborough Community Renewal Organization and served as a board member on the UTSC Campus Council.

Shan was a former school board member who won in a Scarborough municipal by-election in 2017.

McKelvie ran on a platform of safe school zones, new housing options for seniors, and an integrated Scarborough transit system, which would include an extension to the current subway system, the Eglinton East light rail transit, and improved bus services.

Scarborough—Rouge Park poll shows McKelvie with sizeable lead

Incumbent Shan falling behind

Scarborough—Rouge Park poll shows McKelvie with sizeable lead

A poll conducted on October 16 by market research firm Forum Research gave municipal councillor challenger Jennifer McKelvie a sizeable lead over incumbent Neethan Shan in Ward 25 ScarboroughRouge Park, the ward that UTSC is located in.

Of the 405 people questioned, McKelvie is polling at 50 per cent while Shan is at 27 per cent.

Shan was elected as councillor for Ward 42 on February 13, 2017 under the previous city boundaries. Forum Research President Lorne Bozinoff said that Shan is “likely to see his tenure on council ceded.”

McKelvie, who is a former UTSC student, is running on establishing an integrated Scarborough transit network and a training centre to combat youth unemployment, as well as enhancing greenspaces.

Of the other Ward 25 candidates, Reza Khoshdel was at seven per cent, Paul Cookson at five per cent, Amanda Cain at three per cent, Cherryl Lews Thurab at one per cent, and the remaining five candidates at six per cent total.

The research also showed that Mayor John Tory is polling at 68 per cent in the ward, while challenger Jennifer Keesmaat is at 21 per cent. Twelve per cent of people said they will be voting for another candidate in the mayoral race.