It is not only Peter Kent (former Global TV anchor) who is running for the Tories in this election. Well-known business TV personality Garth Turner is running in Halton riding for the Tories against Gary Carr. Carr is that former provincial Tory who caved in to the Paul Martin charisma and switched parties to the Liberals, and ran and won federally for Team Martin. Clearly he didn't deserve to get in the first time, given his turncoat antics, but there it is. Anyway, Garth is running against him.
Those who know remember that Turner was in parliament before during the Mulroney years, and was briefly in the cabinet as Minister of National Revenue under Kim Campbell. He's been on TV ever since as a business anchor, mainly hosting shows produced by his own company. Well, Garth is trying to get back into the House of Commons again and you can read his blog to find out how he is doing. It's interesting to read about how he's doing knocking on doors, canvassing. It's something I've done myself with candidates and it's always good to find out someone else's perspective on how things are going.
It's interesting because Peter Kent, too, quit business reporting to run for office for the Tories. He was co-hosting Moneywise before. I guess business reporting isn't what it's cracked up to be, otherwise they'd keep doing it. These two guys Peter Kent and Garth Turner must have very interesting things to say to voters about the income trusts situation and that whole leak business.
It's odd for me to talk about these TV business news types quitting to go into politics because I've been trying to go the complete opposite direction of these two guys. I have been applying for business TV news positions in recent weeks; this, after spending too much useless time trying to get somewhere in politics in Toronto. In fact, I'm still biding my time on these campaigns in Toronto!! I was out on the trail today, freezing to death. I'm in, yet I can't get out.
Maybe I ought to take a hint and forget broadcasting, and stick to politics like the rest of these media types, but I miss TV. I was down in Scarborough-Rouge River for the by-election there and happened to meet Caroline Jeba, who had left CFTO to start her own business, and she was helping on the campaign there, too! She was a successful reporter in the biggest market in the country, for a couple of different stations. And here she was, having bailed out! Everyone's quitting TV to go into politics! It's a veritable refugee camp.
As for this election, Peter Kent may have more name recognition in more homes but for my money I'm willing to bet Garth is more likely to win. St. Paul's is generally very tough and Liberal, but Halton is a Tory seat provincially and traditional friendly territory for the folks with the blue signs. Didn't Otto Jelinek hold the seat at one point in time? And Jelinek was a huge right-winger, too, he helped knife Joe Clark. And he did colour commentating for figure skating on CTV, too, that guy. Anyway, Halton ought to be a Conservative gain. If Garth doesn't win there, the Tories will wind up getting crushed across the country again, like last time.
TV news types who went into politics: Ralph Klein, Brian Tobin, and who could forget, RENE LEVESQUE!
Some well-known political types who went the other way: Tim Russert, Jeff Greenfield, George Stephanopoulos, --- and come to think of it, Jerry Springer (ex-mayor of Cincinnati) !!!!.