Well, it was only a matter of time until Giorgio Mammoliti bailed from the Toronto Mayoral Race to try and preserve his current job as a Toronto City Councillor -though even that may be in jeopardy as in his quest for Mayor, 8 other candidates in his ward have entered the race to take his council seat.
Mammoliti may have only now decided to withdraw from the race, but the majority of Torontonians already dismissed him as a joke candidate after the release of his plans for Toronto's waterfront and the Gardiner if elected (see No cars on the Gardiner in Mammoliti’s waterfront plan).
Now that Mammoliti is out, internal polls taken by Mammoliti's team suggest that Rob Ford is expected to pick up his share of the voters.
Here's the story from the Toronto Star:
Rob Ford stands to gain as Giorgio Mammoliti withdraws
With Giorgio Mammoliti’s exit from the mayoral race — a move he is scheduled to officially make around noon Monday — the candidate poised to gain the most is Mammoliti’s longtime political rival, Rob Ford.
Internal polling from the Mammoliti camp shows virtually all of the right-wing councillor’s support would fall to his conservative rival.
Ford, when contacted by email late Sunday, said it must have been a difficult decision to withdraw.
”I certainly would welcome the support from those who were with Councillor Mammoliti,” he said. “We may not agree on everything but I look forward to working with Councillor Mammoliti in the future.”
That Mammoliti supporters would find common ground with Ford isn’t surprisingly since the neighbouring west-end councillors wear similar political stripes. But it is perhaps ironic, given that insiders have speculated the only reason Mammoliti opted to stay in the race so long was to derail Ford’s campaign.
And, here is the story from the Toronto Sun:
Mayoral race will thin out: Pantalone
Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti may be dropping out of the mayor’s race Monday but other candidates will follow, says fellow candidate Joe Pantalone.
Toronto’s deputy mayor predicted Sunday that he will be fighting it out with only Councillor Rob Ford and former Liberal cabinet minister George Smitherman in the final days of the campaign for mayor. Voters go to the polls on Oct. 25.
A source close to the Mammoliti campaign, however, told the Toronto Sun Saturday that the York West councillor will announce Monday he’s dropping out of the race, but will run to keep his council seat.
Mammoliti’s departure is just another phase in the marathon run to this fall’s election, Pantalone said.
“At the end of the day, I think it will be myself, Rob Ford and George Smitherman,” he said. “You have to have traction in politics.”
Reached by phone Sunday, Councillor Rob Ford said he thinks many members of Mammoliti’s team will come over to his campaign.
“It’s too bad he’s leaving the race,” Ford said. “The more the merrier, I say.”
But Ford balked at the notion that with Mammoliti’s exit, he’s one of the last right-of-centre candidate’s in the race.
“I’m a candidate for everybody, left, right and centre,” Ford said.
In Mammoliti's Exit speech, he pushed that people should allow lesser-known Toronto Mayoral Candidate Rocco Achampong, who's website can be found at http://roccoformayor.com/, to take his seat in the future Toronto Mayoral Debates.
After hearing Rocco's comments after Mammoliti's speech, I agree that Rocco would be a welcomed addition. I hope that CP24 and other debate-holders were listening...
http://www.flickr.com/photos/shaunpierre/4662200352/sizes/l/ by Shaun Merritt on flickr