Prominent midtown incumbents Josh Matlow, Joe Mihevc and Jaye Robinson are the only candidates to have filed so far to run in their respective wards in the Oct. 27 municipal election, but they’re not resting on their laurels when it comes to campaigning.
None of the three say they see themselves being acclaimed, but they all agree they’ve done good community work despite the highly publicized distractions that have gone on at City Hall during the current term.
The other two midtown councillors to launch re-election bids — Josh Colle, Ward 15, and Kristyn Wong-Tam, Ward 27 — have seen challengers register. In Ward 16, Karen Stintz vacated her council seat and her position as TTC chair in order to run for mayor. So far, six candidates have lined up to vie to be her replacement.
Mihevc acknowledged he likely won’t be alone in Ward 21 for long, after Mayor Rob Ford declared war on him and nine other councillors through his “Ford Nation” YouTube show.
“I hear rumblings, certainly from the mayor’s camp, that he wants to get someone to run against me,” Mihevc shared during an April interview. “I’m on his Top 10 list.”
When asked what he thought of being an enemy of the mayor, Mihevc chuckled.
“I view it as a blessing,” he said. “In a normal world, the mayor takes care of the mayor, and the mayor does not take sides in local races unless someone has been particularly belligerent to him or her.
“I say to him, bring it on.”
Matlow, Ward 22, and Robinson, Ward 25, were not among those targetted by the marginalized mayor, but both say they expect competition between now and the Sept. 15 deadline.
“There are several months until election and the chances are very likely that there will be more people in the races in every ward,” Matlow said. “That being said though, I feel that the community and I have a very positive relationship — we work very well together and we deliver results together.”
Matlow said he will be keeping a close eye on when and if the writ will be dropped for a provincial election, a complication he would not welcome.
“It would be folly to have municipal and provincial candidates knocking on the door at the same time,” he said.
While acknowledging the current council term has been a “very interesting” one, with the mayor’s personal life grabbing international headlines and council voting to strip him of his powers, Robinson said she is pleased to have “been able to get a lot of traction on local neighbourhood issues and moved them forward.”
And there’s plenty of time to work on those issues even more, she said.