March 6, 2009
Like many other lucky Conservatives, I awoke this morning to the happy news that John Tory lost yesterday’s byelection to Liberal Rick Johnson and tendered his long overdue resignation this afternoon. As some may recall, Tory not only blew the Provincial Election for the PC party in 2007, he lost his own riding and has been a laughing stock ever since.
For many their last memory of John Tory may be that he lost an established Conservative seat to the Liberals because of his selfish refusal to step down, or the fact that even when an MPP tried to hand him her seat the voters refused to choke on a term of Tory leadership, but I’d like to share a story about Mr. Tory and what could have been. This is one of many (MANY) stories that we have never shared with the public.
In August of 2007, CANACE decided to hold a rally in Caledonia right before the upcoming election to try to shine as much media light on the plight of the town as possible right before people hit the polls. We were all hopeful that John Tory was going to do the obvious by defeating McGuinty, but just to be sure we sent a boat load of ammunition to Tory that he could use to expose the disgusting things that the Liberals had allowed and encouraged in Caledonia.
As time wore on, not only did Mr. Tory not use any of the damning evidence that had been handed to him against McGuinty, he actually managed to start losing in the polls by focusing on faith based school funding while ignoring the one issue that Dalton stood no chance of squirming away from which was law and order. Seeing Tory’s chances headed for the toilet, we concocted a plan to help turn things around at the last minute for Tory and arranged for me to meet with Toby Barrett’s office to discuss it.
The plan I presented to Toby’s campaign manager was quite simple. We were holding a rally 2 days before the election in Caledonia and would give John Tory a platform that day to stand beside Joe Gualtieri, and Dancer in front of the community and tell the people of Ontario about the complete break down of rule of law on the McGuinty watch. Furthermore we would agree not to march to DCE as planned and we would let Tory take the credit for talking us out of doing something as extreme as walking down a street.
After taking some time to think it over while talking some more about faith based funding, Tory declined to attend and handed the election to McGuinty on a sliver platter. Our event and the march to DCE was a success as we always knew it would be and in fact it was the lead story on CityTV news that night which put Caledonia and law & order in the faces of countless viewers in Toronto and across the Province as planned.
I’m sure that each of us will have our own way of remembering the colossal failure that was Tory, but for me it will be a quote he gave reporters during his resignation speech today. “All I know is that I tried my best”. One last lie to the people of Ontario on his way out the door.
Goodbye John and good riddance.