The riding of Toronto Centre has been a turbulent one for the Conservatives. Mark Warner, an international trade lawyer, was rejected by the party as a candidate in 2007. Over the objections of the Toronto Centre riding association, Mr. Warner was removed by the Party’s National Campaign Manager, Doug Finley and Don Plett president of National Council of the Conservative Party. It appears that Mr. Warner’s support of local issues and those important to his constituients like education, affordable housing and HIV/AIDS issues were “off message”. Warner’s bid to fight for Bill Graham’s old seat came to a halt and Bob Rae easily won it.
Fast forward to today, Chris Reid was to be the Conservative party’s candidate in Toronto Centre, but has “voluntarily dropped out” of the election race today. Yesterday’s comments by a Liberal blog, BIGCITYLIB, could not have helped Chris Reid’s chances either way. BigCityLib pointed to Reid’s posts on “Political Thoughts From A Gay Conservative”. Reid criticized the passengers and bus driver of the Greyhound bus tragedy and Reid’s “answer” for their “inaction” was no handguns aboard. What?! Forget for a minute the bravery of those aboard that helped evacuate and then held the killer trapped inside the bus. How dangerous would a bus trip be if everyone had weapons? For Reid to say
“we need concealed-carry handgun legislation in this country, so we can defend one another and deter horrible events such as this” – from Chris Reid’s “Political Thoughts From A Gay Conservative” blog
is just plain ridiculous. Reid’s controversial blog is no longer available (but can be read in cache – the internet tends not to forget…)
Chris Reid - Conservative Blog
The Conservatives have reacted quickly, as they have with apologies to Jim Davis, related to jokes made by Gerry Ritz while working on the listeriosis crisis file, and to aboriginal peoples following comments to members of their community. So Chris Reid has been replaced, the new Conservative Candidate in Toronto is David Gentili. Gentili is reported to have worked recently in PM Harper’s office.
In Toronto Centre Riding your list of candidates (for NOW…)
Johan Boyden (Communist Party of Canada)
Philip Fernandez (Marxist-Leninist Party of Canada)
David Gentili (Conservative Party of Canada)
Ellen Michelson (Green Party of Canada)
Bob Rae (Liberal Party of Canada)
Liz White (Animal Alliance Environment Voters Party of Canada)