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Updated: Mon, 24 Feb 2014 09:22:49 GMT | By CBC News, cbc.ca

John Tory declares candidacy for mayor of Toronto



John Tory and Coun. Karen Stintz will both be pursuing mayoral bids. CBC

John Tory and Coun. Karen Stintz will both be pursuing mayoral bids. CBC

Saying he wants to "run a positive campaign about the future of the city," former Ontario Progressive Conservative leader John Tory officially entered Toronto's mayoralty race today, with Coun. Karen Stintz expected to file her papers later in the morning.

Tory arrived at city hall just after 8:30 a.m. ET. After filling out his nomination forms, Tory spoke briefly with reporters about his campaign, which will be his second run at the mayor's chair after a failed attempt to beat David Miller in 2003.

"Right now, we're at a time when we need to get the whole city working together, the whole council working together to make it accountable, to make it affordable, to make it functional," he said.

Tory spoke generally about his campaign platform, saying he was committed to low taxes and a new north-south subway line to ease pressure on the crowded Yonge-University-Spadina line

For Tory, the formal announcement of his candidacy comes after a long period of speculation that he would take the plunge.

For the past four years, Tory has hosted a radio show on a Toronto radio station.

He took up the radio gig a few months after resigning his position as the Progressive Conservative leader in 2009.

Tory also has political experience dating back to the Ontario government led by former premier Bill Davis. He worked as the then-premier’s principal secretary for five years in the 1980s.

In 2003, Tory ran for mayor of Toronto, but finished behind David Miller, who went on to serve a second term as mayor.

Stintz, the three-term councillor for Ward 16 Eglinton-Lawrence, had previously said that she would pursue a mayoral bid. She held off entering the race formally until council named a replacement for her as TTC chair.

She was expected to file her nomination papers some time around 10 a.m. ET.

Chow, Minnan-Wong

The emergence of Tory and Stintz as mayoral contenders brings into sharper focus the field of candidates who will be vying for the mayor’s job on Oct. 27.

Trinity-Spadina MP Olivia Chow has said she is considering a bid herself, as has Coun. Denzil Minnan-Wong. But neither has announced a final decision on the matter or filed papers thus far.

Two former city councillors, David Soknacki and Norm Gardner, had already filed papers in January, along with more than two dozen other candidates, including Ford himself.

Soknacki, a former city budget chief, announced his intent to run long before he registered to do so in January. On transit, the mayoral candidate has so far said that he believes the city should be building light-rail in Scarborough, rather than a more costly subway expansion project that council approved last year.

Rob Ford registered to run for re-election on Jan. 2, the first day it was possible for him to do so.

The incumbent mayor has long said he relishes the opportunity to debate his opponents. He has also predicted that the campaign is going to be "a bloodbath."

Last week, the mayor’s brother, Coun. Doug Ford, announced that he would not be running again as a councillor and also that he would not run provincially. Instead, he will focus on his brother’s campaign and serve as the mayor’s campaign manager.

Late Sunday evening, Coun. Ford told the local Toronto television station CP24 that he believed voters would see a stark contrast between Tory and his brother.

"We’ll run on our record, what we’ve done for the City of Toronto," he said in a telephone interview.

"John can run on his record, what he’s done for the City of Toronto and what he tried to do in the province — that he was unsuccessful — and we’ll let the people decide."

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