Did we hear rumblings from Hazel’s grave the other day? I am sure we can have every confidence in current Mississauga mayor, Bonnie Crombie that everything will work out all right. What would upset the late Hazel McCallion though is the thought of giving anything to Brampton’s Brown.
It was when Doug Ford first suggested that he had every confidence that an amicable divorce could be conducted in separating Mississauga from Brampton and both municipalities from Peel County that I knew, if Hazel were still alive there would be none of that BS.
The first thing we all need to understand is exactly when Doug Ford kissed and made up with Patrick Brown? The former member of parliament from Barrie was hardly in Doug Ford’s good books back in 2015 when he won the Ontario conservative leadership with all of his signups from the India diaspora (immigrants from India).
How and when the deal was hatched to bring Brown down with allegations about inappropriate behaviour was obviously from within the conservative party in Ontario. Liberals in Barrie had been studying Brown from the time he won the federal election in Barrie in 2006. They decided that Brown had got lucky as a retail politician and could be defeated in a subsequent election.
That did not happen because of another conservative politician named Jason Kenney from Calgary. Kenney (already a cabinet member) took the young MP from Barrie under his wing. He showed him what could be achieved by earning the devotion of blocks of new comers to Canada. Then there was the first of many flights to the Indian sub-continent, at the expense of Canadian taxpayers, which greatly influenced the MP’s importance with the Indian diaspora.
It was the help of the Indian diaspora that enabled Brown to swamp the membership of the progressive conservative party of Ontario and win the leadership of the party.
Not all conservatives in Brown’s Barrie riding considered his tactics fair in winning the leadership. They used some very old and well proven tactics to unseat him—they accused him of improper behaviour with supposedly under-age females. (The subsequent refuting of these allegations did not restore him to the position of party leader.)
Looking for something political to do, Brown found that Doug Ford would not accept him as a provincial candidate for the conservative party. He therefore put his name forward for chair of Peel Region. (The county that includes the cities of Brampton and Mississauga, and the municipality of Caledon.) The conservative leader also blocked that attempt by cancelling the election of a Peel chair.
But Ford found no way to stop Brown for running for mayor in Brampton. In the same way as he had won the conservative party leadership, Brown got together with his organizers in the diaspora and told them to promise the Sikh and Hindi residents of Brampton (of which there are many) and promise them that more of Brampton’s parks would be converted to cricket pitches. He won easily.
If the premier had still wanted to mess with Patrick Brown’s political career, he needed to amalgamate Brampton and Mississauga. It would not only have solved the political problem, cost less for the taxpayers, but there would be a better balance of baseball diamonds and cricket pitches in the new city’s parks.
Copyright 2023 © Peter Lowry
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