Patrick Brown is Running for Peel Regional Chair
He’s back…or maybe he never left, depending on how you look at things.
Former Ontario PC leader Patrick Brown registered to run for Peel Regional Chair on Tuesday, July 3, beginning a rather improbable political comeback.
Filed my papers this morning to run for @regionofpeel Chair. Looking forward to fighting for the people of Peel. #FairDealForPeel #RegionofPeel #WorkingWithYou #Jobs #Taxes #PublicSafety #Gridlock #Brampton #Mississauga #Caledon #PeelPoli pic.twitter.com/0ohOhC54se— Patrick Brown (@patrickbrownont) July 3, 2018
Six months ago, Brown’s political career appeared to be over. He was forced out of his leadership and his party after allegations surfaced that he had sexually harassed two women during his time as a city councillor and MP in Barrie. Those allegations were subsequently refuted and Brown is now suing CTV, the network that broke the story, for $8 million.
Brown announced he would not be running for re-election as an MPP, and his successor as Ontario PC leader, Doug Ford, went on to lead the Conservatives to a majority government for the first time in 15 years, toppling Kathleen Wynne’s Liberals on the June 7 provincial election.
While he announced he was writing a book outlining what he calls “a political assassination”, we noted in a previous article the plethora of activity that Brown was engaged in around Peel recently. The former PC leader showed up to almost every community and private event in the region, so much so that (as the old adage goes) he would have shown up to an opening of an envelope if he was asked.
Contrary to what was reported in other media outlets, Brown is not the first candidate from Peel to register to run (his current address is listed being in Lorne Park, Mississauga). Other candidates that registered prior to Brown are Mississauga councillor Ron Starr, Masood Khan, Amir Ali, Ken Looy, Vidya Gautam, and Marcin Huniewicz.
More high profile names rumoured to be interested in running for Regional Chair are former Mississauga MPPs Harinder Takhar and Charles Sousa, the latter recently serving as finance minister in the previous Liberal government.
Brown’s supporters should be ecstatic for the man who they once thought could be the next premier before his untimely fall from grace. A candidacy as Peel Regional Chair would certainly galvanize those who wanted to get him elected to a prominent political role.
On the other hand, detractors could come out in full force in an attempt to stop “an outsider” from penetrating local politics in Peel; Brown was a political figure in Barrie for years before he moved to Mississauga. This former NDP candidate had this to post on Facebook about Brown’s candidacy:
For those of you who are wondering what the Regional Chair is, it’s the position of Chief Executive Officer of the municipal corporation (in this case, the Region of Peel) as well as the leader of regional council. For decades the role was filled by an appointment process by the elected regional councillors themselves, usually to a retired politician.
But last year, the previous Liberal government passed a bill changing that role to an elected position for York, Peel and Niagara Regions. Durham, Halton and Waterloo region already used an election process to select the chair.
Brown is not the only former provincial MPP running for a regional position - former Liberal cabinet minister Steven Del Duca is competing to become chair of York Region. Del Duca was the MPP for Vaughan until he was defeated by a Conservative candidate on June 7.
Municipal elections take place on October 22. A full list of candidates running as well as additional resources on what the role of the chair is and how an election is to be conducted can be found here.
What do you think of the former PC leader looking for a political comeback in Peel Region?
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