Former Progressive Conservative leader Patrick Brown has made his political comeback – in Brampton.
Brown was elected as the mayor of Brampton on Monday, defeating incumbent Linda Jeffrey.
CP24 declared the close win for Brown just after 9 p.m. Brown appears to have secured about 44.4 per cent of the vote compared to 40.7 per cent for Jeffrey.
Brown secured just under 45,000 votes, while Jeffrey had about 41,000.
Back in July, on the last day of registration, Brown entered the Brampton mayoral race after Premier Doug Ford announced a decision to cancel the Peel Regional chair election, which he had been a candidate in.
The former federal MP for Barrieand ex-PC leader left provincial politics earlier this year after two women anonymously accused him of sexual misconduct. Brown has rejected the accusations and is suing CTV News for defamation for first reporting the allegations.
Speaking alongside his new wife Genevieve Gualtieri on Monday night, Brown said he is ready to focus on building a safe community in the city of Brampton.
“Escalating crime has shocked our community and that’s not the Brampton we know,” Brown said in front of a chanting crowd on Monday night. “That’s not the Brampton we are going to accept and during this campaign I tried to talk about ideas on how we can make our community safer from combating poverty, investing in mental health support, to working with the police to make sure we have the resources to keep our community safe.”
“That will be top of mind to make sure Brampton is safe.”
Brown also said he wants to work towards building Brampton up in an effort to havefewer residents commuting out of the city for work and school.
“What I’ve heard across the city is that Brampton wants to welcome investment, Brampton wants to be open for business and Brampton wants to see jobs. I want to make sure young people who grow up in Brampton can have a job,” he said.
“The days of sky-rocketing taxes and red tape are gone in Brampton.”
Jeffrey has long been critical of Brown’s bid, saying mayor of Brampton is “not a consolation prize.”
“Friends, tonight’s results are not what any of us expected,” she said on Monday night. “We fought a hard and challenging race. I want to congratulate Patrick Brown as our new mayor. I’m proud of the four years of leading our city and we have accomplished a great deal for Brampton.”
“I can confidently say that our city is in better shape than how I found it.”
Jeffrey had represented Brampton for the past 25 years in different capacities.