Ramal takes shots at Morgan’s MP endorsements as mayoral race heats up
With less than a month to go until we head to the polls, the attacks have begun in London’s mayoral race.
Candidate Khalil Ramal held a news conference on Tuesday to say the favourite in the race, Deputy Mayor Josh Morgan, is the choice of London’s rich and powerful.
He also decried the endorsements Morgan announced over the weekend.
“I have been told by influential people that this candidate (Morgan) is the mayor in all but name. The establishment and the power brokers in the City of London have decided that this person will be the next mayor,” Ramal said at the news conference at the London Music Hall of Fame. “I was troubled that we now have party politicians willing to bring partisan politics into our municipal election.”
Morgan has been endorsed by London North-Centre Liberal MP Peter Fragiskatos, London-Fanshawe MP Irene Mathyssen, who is a New Democrat, and the Conservative MP for Elgin-Middlesex-London, Karen Vecchio.
Ramal said that the endorsements from MPs have never happened before and are inappropriate for a municipal race.
One Morgan opponent, Sean O’Connell, wondered whether they were an violation of ethics.
Yesterday I contacted the Speaker of the House of Commons and the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner’s office for @karen_vecchio @LMathys and @pfragiskatos for violating the code of conflict of interest for Members. #ldnont #ldnvotes
— Sean M. O'Connell (@Wodanis) September 27, 2022
“I’m pleased to advise that I proactively reached out to the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner’s office prior to making any political endorsements and have followed their direction to the letter,” Fragiskatos said in response.
Morgan also dismissed Ramal’s criticism.
“The fact three individuals representing three distinct political views can all agree on who they believe is best qualified to serve as Mayor… that’s reflective of my non-partisan, collaborative approach to politics, and how I intend to govern as Mayor,” Morgan told London News Today. “Furthermore, I think part of what makes somebody an effective Mayor is the ability to work with people and organizations of all different backgrounds and ideologies. That’s how big things get done on behalf of Londoners.”
Meantime, Ramal also took issue with the London and District Labour Council’s endorsement of Morgan.
“I was toubled that the Labour Council endorsed some one who voted against raising wages, and I was most troubled that people who have money and influence and power have decided who will be the next mayor, without asking the people of London,” Ramal said.
Ramal was critical of Morgan’s vote against raising wages for part-time summer positions at city hall.
“The support and the endorsements that matter most is that which comes from Londoners at the door. Yes, I received three high profile endorsements over the weekend, but I also had 50 additional people request lawn signs for their front yards over the weekend too,” Morgan said. “We’re now up to 500 and counting throughout the city, and that number climbs higher every day. Those endorsements are the kind I’m working hardest to earn every single day, and that’s accomplished by focusing on issues that matter to Londoners.”
Morgan, Ramal, O’Connell and seven other candidates are running for mayor in the municipal election, which is coming up on October 24th.