LIVE BLOG: Ontario leaders face off for first election debate

Liberal Premier Kathleen Wynne, centre, Progressive Conservative Leader Doug Ford, left, and NDP Leader Andrea Horwath take part in the Ontario Leaders debate in Toronto on May 7, 2018. This is the first of three debates scheduled before the provincial election on June 7, 2018. Photo from The Canadian Press.

It’s finally time for Ontario’s political leaders to go toe-to-toe for the top job in the province.

Starting Monday at 6 p.m. ET, the leaders of Ontario’s three main political parties kicked off the provincial election campaign with the first of three televised debates.

Liberal Leader Kathleen Wynne, Progressive Conservative Leader Doug Ford and New Democratic Party Leader Andrea Horwath will took part in the event, which is being broadcasted by City TV.

The debate is a chance for the leaders to share their vision for the province and how they plan to get there. It also provides an opportunity for voters to see who’s most prepared to lead Ontario.

But will these politicians appeal to the issues Ontarians seem to care most about?

The debate began with a questions about de-escalation training for police and carding by police, resulting in a lively conversation on the current government’s legislation on police training, funding and accountability of officers.

Ford announced he intends to invest $5 billion on “rapid transit” in the GTA, including relief lines, while Wynne responded by saying transit should be built to supply the whole province, not just the GTA.

Ford called Wynne “disingenuous” on multiple occasions and asked her when she “lost her way.”

“What I believe is government exists to do the things that people can’t do themselves,” Wynne said in response. “And I don’t understand how cutting actually helps people.”

In a particularly interesting event in the discussion, Ford turned to Wynne and said she has “a nice smile on her face” before she confronts him. The premier responded with “you do too.”

When the topic of Hydro One was brought into the open discussion, Horwath took the opportunity to compare the Liberal and PC parties future plans.

“The electricity system under Mr. Ford and Ms. Wynne will stay in private hands and operate under the interest of private shareholders,” Horwath said.

Although both Wynne and Horwath asked Ford what exactly would be included in his promised 4 per cent budget cut, the provincial PC leader did not provide specifics.

In her closing statement, Wynne said Ford’s perspective is about “cutting” while Horwath’s position is “magical thinking.”

“This election’s our opportunity to do something completely different,” Horwath said in her final statement. “Together we can change this province for the better.”

“After 15 year of mismanagements, scandals and waste of your hard earned tax dollars, the Liberal government is desperate to hold on to power,” Ford said. “You know me, I’m for the little guy.”

Yahoo Canada conducted an online poll in recent weeks where more than 7,000 voted on the most important issue leading up to the June 7 election.

Here are the top five issues as of Monday, according to the poll results:

  1. Health care (25%)
  2. Government accountability (16%)
  3. Provincial debt (15%)
  4. Taxes (14%)
  5. Economic growth (8%)

A recent poll of 1,010 eligible voters conducted on May 3 and 4 by Pollara Strategic Insights for Maclean’s shows Ford’s PC party comfortably in the lead with 40 per cent support, followed by the NDP at 30 per cent and the Liberals at 23 per cent.

According to poll averages compiled by CBC News’ Poll Tracker, Ford has the most to lose heading into the election campaign. As of Monday, the PCs sit at 42.7 per cent support, followed by the Liberals at 25.8 per cent, the NDP at 24.9 per cent and the Greens at 5.1 per cent.

Projections from CBC News suggest the PCs have a 92.2 per cent of winning a majority.

Ford is a relative newcomer to provincial politics. He does not hold a seat in the Ontario Legislature. Before narrowly winning the PC leadership race in March, Ford’s only political experience was as a Toronto city councillor from 2010 to 2014.

Wynne has served as the premier of Ontario since 2013. She was first elected as an MPP in Ontario in 2003, serving as a minister for five departments. Wynne has been re-elected three times as an MPP since entering provincial politics.

Horwath was first elected as an MPP in 2004 after being elected to city council in Hamilton, Ont., in 1997. She is the longest-serving provincial party leader in Ontario. Horwath was chosen to lead her party in 2009.

Follow along with our live blog below for the latest updates from the debate.

With files from Elisabetta Bianchini

  • Surging U.S. deficit a warning for Canadians wanting tax cuts: Don Pittis
    News
    CBC

    Surging U.S. deficit a warning for Canadians wanting tax cuts: Don Pittis

    According to a new Senate report, what Canada needs is for its rich people to get richer. Of course that's not what it says in so many words, but in calling on the Canadian government to follow the U.S. in cutting corporate taxes, that is effectively what it is asking for. Perhaps it's simply a matter of bad timing, but the Senate banking committee report titled Canada: Still Open for Business?, obviously in the works for a while, has hit the media just as two serious flaws in the U.S. tax-cutting strategy made headlines in the U.S.

  • TSMC sees modest fourth quarter revenue growth, shrugs off trade war impact
    News
    Reuters

    TSMC sees modest fourth quarter revenue growth, shrugs off trade war impact

    By Jess Macy Yu and Yimou Lee TAIPEI (Reuters) - Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC) offered a modest fourth-quarter revenue growth outlook, predicting weaker sales of high-performance computers for cryptocurrency mining will partially offset solid demand for chips from smartphones. TSMC , the world's largest contract chipmaker whose clients include iPhone maker Apple , also shrugged off concerns over Sino-U.S. trade tensions hurting its sales, betting investment in advanced chipmaking technology will help cushion the impact. ...

  • How to follow the Yukon municipal elections with CBC North
    News
    CBC

    How to follow the Yukon municipal elections with CBC North

    It's election day for six municipalities across the Yukon, and CBC North will be there with results, highlights and reactions every step of the way. 

  • Putting seatbelts on school buses a 'money issue,' former N.L. operator says
    News
    CBC

    Putting seatbelts on school buses a 'money issue,' former N.L. operator says

    A former school bus operator in western Newfoundland says seatbelts aren't being added into school buses because of cost. "It's very much a money issue," Dave Callahan said. "The minute that they adopt school buses having seatbelts in them, they're going to require at least a third more buses in this province because there will no longer be three [students] to a seat.

  • London's black cabs soon to be seen on the streets of Paris
    News
    The Canadian Press

    London's black cabs soon to be seen on the streets of Paris

    London's black cabs will be seen on the streets of Paris next year as the company that makes them begins selling its wares in the City of Light. London Electric Vehicle Co., which makes plug-in electric taxis that look like traditional black cabs, has put about 600 vehicles on the streets of London and has already expanded to Amsterdam, Berlin, Hamburg and Oslo. The move into Paris comes as Mayor Anne Hidalgo aggressively works to improve air quality in the city.

  • Tasty street names could be in store for future agriculture-themed Calgary community
    News
    CBC

    Tasty street names could be in store for future agriculture-themed Calgary community

    The future southeast Calgary community of Rangeview is tentatively slated to have some unusual street names. It's a large area that will be built in years to come, south of the community of Seton in the far southeast corner of the city. The developer, Section 23 Developments, says the street names are themed around edible landscaping and food celebration.

  • New iNdigital space showcases digital and interactive media at imagineNATIVE
    News
    CBC

    New iNdigital space showcases digital and interactive media at imagineNATIVE

    The rising popularity of digital interactive work like VR experiences and video games has spurred the imagineNATIVE film and media arts festival in Toronto to add a dedicated digital space this year. 

  • Priced too high? Shoppers balk at marijuana price tag
    News
    CBC

    Priced too high? Shoppers balk at marijuana price tag

    Cannabis sales were brisk around New Brunswick on the first day of legalized retailing, despite prices on many products that appeared to be the highest in Canada. Dameon Pettis was one of the first shoppers let into the Cannabis NB store on Moncton's Main Street but left without making a purchase. "The prices are just not in our price range, honestly," said Pettis.

  • Chestnuts, swagger and good grammar: how Italy's 'Captain' builds his brand
    News
    Reuters

    Chestnuts, swagger and good grammar: how Italy's 'Captain' builds his brand

    Salvini, who modeled his "Italians first" campaign after Trump's successful U.S. presidential bid, has built an effective communications machine aimed not just at bolstering his League party's popularity at home but also helping anti-immigrant, populist forces win control of European parliament next May. Salvini has been especially successful on Facebook, Italy's most popular platform with 34 million active users per month out of an eligible voting population of 46.6 million. In the first week of July, for example, 2.6 million people liked, commented, shared or watched videos on Salvini's 82 Facebook posts, versus 1.5 million engagements on 32 posts for Trump, Raffa's data showed. "Salvini always has much more engagement than Trump," Luca Morisi, Salvini's social media strategist and the man behind the machine, said at a workshop hosted by pollster and political analysis firm YouTrend in early October.

  • Golden Retriever loves getting dragged across the floor
    Rumble

    Golden Retriever loves getting dragged across the floor

    Either this pup is super lazy or it enjoys the free ride across the smooth tiles. Either way it's hilarious to watch!

  • 6 ways to do takeout — without the waste
    News
    CBC

    6 ways to do takeout — without the waste

    Takeout is a great way to skip cooking and the dishes. But it often comes with a side of guilt about all the waste — much of it Styrofoam or black plastic that are non-recyclable in most cities across Canada. The good news, given that it's Waste Reduction Week in Canada, is there are a growing number of options for zero-waste takeout, including some high-tech systems that could one day be deployed across entire cities to make throwaway containers obsolete. The simplest ones — such as customers bringing their own containers and restaurants not automatically offering things like plastic cutlery — are free and can even save restaurants money, said Lisa Borden, who has been trying to reduce restaurant waste through her website, Takeout Without, since 2010.

  • Bargain price oil: How long will it last?
    News
    CBC

    Bargain price oil: How long will it last?

    As oil from Alberta and Saskatchewan continues to sell at record discounts, American refineries are enjoying lucrative profit margins at the expense of Canadian oil producers. The sharp drop in oil prices began in late September and is expected to continue for roughly another month. The culprit is limited export pipeline space and refinery maintenance outages in the U.S. Midwest.

  • Photos: Canadians celebrate pot legalization by lighting up
    Yahoo Canada News

    Photos: Canadians celebrate pot legalization by lighting up

    They were elated, thrilled, ecstatic, overjoyed… and some just wanted to chill. On Wednesday, some Canadians waited in massive lines to buy their first legal grams of cannabis. Plenty were also keen to celebrate by legally smoking weed in public for the first time — something that’s still illegal in some parts of the country. Of course, plenty of people, such as those in Ontario, blazed without standing in line first. The province is beginning its pot rollout with online sales and moving to private retail stores in April 2019 at the earliest. There were plenty of events, both planned and impromptu. Toronto potheads lit up in Trinity Bellwoods Park, University of British Columbia students poured onto a hill beside a student centre to partake, and some immediately got high right outside cannabis stores. Here’s a look at how some folks spent their first day using cannabis legally.

  • France's OVH to triple spending to take on Google, Amazon in cloud computing
    News
    Reuters

    France's OVH to triple spending to take on Google, Amazon in cloud computing

    The privately-held company will invest between 4-7 billion euros ($4.6-$8.1 billion) over its next five-year plan starting in 2021, founder and owner Octave Klaba, 43, told reporters on Wednesday. It portrays itself as a transparent and secure alternative to Google, Amazon and Microsoft, which dominate cloud computing. The sector is currently thriving on a greater need for IT infrastructure to drive new digital businesses, and now represents a major part of Amazon's profits.

  • Uber enters trailer leasing business
    News
    Reuters

    Uber enters trailer leasing business

    Uber Technologies Inc [UBER.UL] said on Wednesday it is entering the trailer leasing business. The new business, called Powerloop, is affiliated with Uber Freight, which connects truckers with shippers, the company said https://medium.com/@UberFreight/how-powerloop-helps-unlock-access-to-power-only-loads-e83268b06ead. Powerloop, which would rent trailers to carriers, is currently available in Texas, Uber said, adding that it expects to expand the new business to other U.S. regions.

  • Legal marijuana increases liability for alcohol servers, owners worry
    News
    CBC

    Legal marijuana increases liability for alcohol servers, owners worry

    Servers and bartenders now have one more responsibility on their plate now that recreational marijuana is legal in Canada — detecting cannabis impairment before letting the booze flow. Adding to that worry among waiters is the fact many alcohol certification programs across Canada haven't been updated to reflect that recreational marijuana is now legal. "It's concerning for me as a bar owner because you don't know how much they've ingested," said Cara Kennedy, owner of the Walkerville Tavern in Windsor, Ont.

  • China's JD.com unwraps FedEx-style parcel business to bolster sales
    News
    Reuters

    China's JD.com unwraps FedEx-style parcel business to bolster sales

    The shift pits JD.com into greater competition with major rival Alibaba Group Holding Ltd's Cainiao network, as well as dedicated domestic parcel delivery firms such as ZTO Express and YTO Express Group Co Ltd. China's second-largest e-commerce firm said the new service would allow businesses and individuals in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou to send parcels to locations around China, using the firm's app to schedule a pick-up by one of the company's staff. The logistics network - which would be able to deliver most packages the same or next day - has previously only been used to ship packages purchased on JD.com's e-commerce platform or by third party companies that lease JD.com's logistics assets. "This marks the next step in leveraging the nationwide logistics network that JD has built over the past decade," Zhenhui Wang, CEO of JD Logistics, said in a statement.

  • Lights out: Hockey fans disappointed with Fantasy Scoreboard gone silent
    News
    CBC

    Lights out: Hockey fans disappointed with Fantasy Scoreboard gone silent

    "It's pretty disappointing," said Stockal, who received the in-home mini scoreboard from his wife as a gift during the last hockey season. Will Nault and Tyler Richards, two Edmonton-area hockey dads, created the product and started marketing it in 2016.

  • Developer vows to make condemned building 'brand new' now that evicted tenants are out
    News
    CBC

    Developer vows to make condemned building 'brand new' now that evicted tenants are out

    The city condemned the 64-unit apartment building on Oct. 1 after it was discovered the heating system had failed in a building already wrought with problems such as water infiltration, insect infestations and mould. About half of the units were occupied when the city gave tenants, many retired or living on social assistance, 17 days to vacate the building, located about one block north of La Fontaine Park at 1150 Marie-Anne East. The approximately ten people still living in the building were forced to pack up the last of their things Wednesday. Some loaded their belongings into a truck while others carried what they could onto a bus provided by the city.

  • Mammoth development could add thousands of homes to Bonnie Doon neighbourhood
    News
    CBC

    Mammoth development could add thousands of homes to Bonnie Doon neighbourhood

    A proposed development for Edmonton's Bonnie Doon neighbourhood could bring thousands of new homes and people to the area. Morguard Investments has proposed to rezone the land Bonnie Doon Centre sits on, transforming it into a mixed-use development that features housing, offices and retail space. The goal is to provide housing for people at various stages of life, said Margaret Knowles, senior vice president of development for Morguard.

  • Conscientious dog learns how to recycle
    Rumble

    Conscientious dog learns how to recycle

    Teach your dog to recycle, reuse, reduce just like this clever pup! How cool is that?

  • 'You feel like an afterthought': Sask. only province without dedicated seizure unit
    News
    CBC

    'You feel like an afterthought': Sask. only province without dedicated seizure unit

    Saskatchewan people who are experiencing seizures are forced to wait two years for treatment, and patients and doctors say that needs to change. Part of the reason is it's the only province without a dedicated hospital unit to monitor seizures. "I feel like a completely forgotten bracket of people, in the sense of 'Let's just stuff them over there,' Shannon Loutitt said in an interview from her Royal University Hospital bed this week.

  • 'One lapse of judgment': Mom of teen killed in train crash pleads for drivers to put away cellphones
    News
    CBC

    'One lapse of judgment': Mom of teen killed in train crash pleads for drivers to put away cellphones

    Sandra LaRose had been looking forward to going grad dress shopping with her daughter this year. Instead, just one day after her 17th birthday, Kailynn Bursic-Panchuk died, a few days after a train crashed into her car on a warm August evening. "I don't get to go grad dress shopping.

  • Convicted killer William Sandeson sues private detective that tipped off police
    News
    CBC

    Convicted killer William Sandeson sues private detective that tipped off police

    A former Dalhousie University medical student convicted of murdering a fellow student is suing the private detective hired to help his defence team but who instead tipped off Halifax police to incriminating evidence. In documents filed in Nova Scotia Supreme Court, William Sandeson alleges Bruce Webb, along with his former employer Martin & Associates Investigations Inc. and its owner Tom Martin, failed in their fiduciary duty to him. Sandeson was found guilty by a jury last year of first-degree murder for killing Taylor Samson in August 2015.

  • News
    Reuters

    Watches and wine: Singapore files more charges over North Korea sanctions breaches

    The multiple charges against Singaporean Chong Hock Yen, 58, and North Korean Li Hyin, 30, span over six years and involve hundreds of thousands of dollars of perfumes, wines and watches in breach of U.N. sanctions, court documents seen by Reuters show. Also charged on Thursday were three Singapore-registered companies linked to Chong - SCN Singapore Pte Ltd, Laurich International Pte Ltd and Sindok Trading Pte Ltd. "Singapore takes its obligations under the United Nations Security Council resolutions seriously and implements them fully and faithfully," Singapore's police said in a statement.