John Tory centered his campaign around his leadership. This is why funding for faith-based education was the only noteworthy difference between Mr. Tory's platform and that of his Liberal rival. That is
until his own PC candidates started to agree with McGuinty on this issue. Now, here is even speculation John Tory might lose in his own riding!
So how can John Tory candidates beat a hasty retreat and still sound principled? A free vote on funding private religious schools is John Tory's answer.
“PC Leader John Tory told voters that funding for faith-based education was an issue of principle for him," said Family Coalition Party (FCP) candidate Bill Murphy. "Tory told the St. Catherine Standard as recently as September 27 that, and I quote his exact words, 'I will not be backing off.'"
"He backed off," said Murphy, "and it reminds me of McGuinty's promise not to raise taxes. At least McGuinty waited until he was elected to undo his pledges. Tory, it seems, cannot wait until the end of the campaign to reverse himself on what he deems issues of principle."
"So we are back to this core issue of trust." said Murphy. "For example, Tory promised Algoma-Manitoulin PC candidate Ron Swain he would fast-track a nuclear energy facility along the North Shore. Would John Tory stay the course when Toronto's environmental activists start to protest?"
"After all, Tory's predecessor Mike Harris canceled the spring bear hunt due to pressure from these same activists," said Murphy, "and Harris was built of sterner stuff than Tory."
"Leadership matters," Murphy said. "When policies are based on principle, there is a foundation that voters can count on."
"Perhaps Mr. Tory should read the FCP platform. We believe that choice is to education what competition is to business. And we stand by our platform on principle - not polls."
"Competition in education unleashes the pent-up creativity of educators, in response to student needs," said Murphy. "Parents are allowed to choose the means by which their children learn best. As Alberta discovered, choice is a catalyst that will spark innovations in teaching, management, and learning."
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FCP Candidate Sault Ste. Marie,
FCP Party Leader
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