It has been a busy week for Prince Edward Hastings MPP Todd Smith.
In just over a week, his party has lost a leader (Patrick Brown), had their interim leader (Vic Fedeli) announce he would not seek full time leadership, and now Smith says he is considering throwing his own hat in for the top job.
Smith says when he heard that Fedeli would not run for the top job, he was surprised. “Now that he is not going past the interim leadership position, I have had a lot of people asking me to run.”
Smith says, “the family and I are talking about running for the leadership of the party. The phone has not left my hand now that I have expressed interest.” The MPP tells Quinte News, ” if there is enough support from my beautiful wife and girls, the Quinte region and the province, I am seriously going to consider it.”
“Over the next few days I am going to talk to the party’s executive committee and see what is required to mount a campaign. I am not an elite and I do not have a lot of money. I have to see what the rules are, and I want to ensure I know the rules before jumping in.” Smith says, “there is a heavy financial burden for a common man to come forward. The financial consideration is a large one.”
So far only Doug Ford (former Toronto councillor and brother of former mayor, the late Rob Ford) has thrown his hat in to replace Patrick Brown. “I worry about the fact we have a platform that was largely crafted by party leadership. I worry that Doug Ford could tear that to pieces.”
Quinte News asked Smith what he thought he could bring to the leadership. “I feel people are supporting me because I am the common man. I am not a big fish, or a Bay Street (Toronto financial district) guy. I like in Oak Hills and drive a 2008 car. The province needs someone that can take on Kathleen Wynne and as the PC Energy Critic, I have done that in the past.”
Smith believes that a new leader will be announced before April.