Previously, I discussed the Mayoral election in Markham in the upcoming election on Oct 22, 2018. For that article, please click: http://chinesenewsgroup.com/news/665024
This year, a whole new slate of candidates show up to challenge the incumbent. Two are Mainland Chinese rookies, while two have mid-east backgrounds. One of them ran for ward#3 councillor and received only 172 votes in the 2014 election. By the way, Mayor Frank Scarpitti won with 50065 votes last time.
Now let us look at the York Regional Councillor elections. There are 4 positions on the Council and all 4 incumbents are back at the races. Like in 2014, we have a total of 12 candidates trying to fill 4 positions. Only 2 challengers from the previous elections remained this time. There are 6 new faces showing up to contest the races.
Conspicuous by her absence this time around is Sophia Sun, the candidate who garnered 16931 votes and came in fifth in the last election, just outside of the winners circle. Sophia was also a nominee for the Provincial Liberal Party in Unionville this year and lost to ward#6 councillor Amanda Collucci.
In this municipal election, voters will be able to select “up to 4 candidates” on the ballot. The winner with the highest votes will become the Deputy Mayor. That post currently belongs to Jack Heath.
One of the candidate to watch is the current ward#3 councillor Don Hamilton. Don forsakes his safe seat to get at the Regional Councillor position. In 2014, Don captured over 6200 votes in ward#3 and was the ward councillor elected with the highest total number of votes. Many residents say that he was not well-known outside of his ward area. Nevertheless, Don is known for his upholding of principles that he believes in. For this reason, he is not one of the Mayor's favourite members in the Council chamber.
While many believe that the incumbents are “unbeatable”, they are not guaranteed a job. People will look at their performance and achievements and make a determination when it comes time to vote. Photo-ops can only get the incumbents so many votes.
As for the challengers, there will be certain advantages when they are running as a repeating candidate. The name recognition is certainly enhanced. In the Regional Councillor races, the candidates cannot and will not knock on doors to talk to electorates as part of their campaign since there are too many residences in all of the eight wards!
When I look at the rookie candidates, I realize that many have not entered Council chambers. They have never made deputations within those walls to voice their opinions for themselves or on behalf of other residents. Many are opportunists who look at this contest as a means to get a high paying job. They have no idea of what they are getting into, if elected.
They have no ideas on the York regional government, its functions and responsibilities, its budget and accumulated deficits, its relationship with all the municipalities under its wings, and all of the issues within the region. They have not followed the wasteful and inefficient operations of Regional government and the millions that it has given away carelessly.
Over the next few months, they will be subject to debates and forums where their ineptness and ignorance will be exposed. These kinds of “interviews” are not for amateurs and the unassisted candidates without a good campaign manager. It will be “baptism by fire” to many of them.
We will start with Ward#1 candidates in Markham next time.
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