‘Ontarians, we should do better’: Voters fume over lowest turnout in history as Doug Ford soaks up victory

·4-min read

In a press conference Friday morning after Ontario's Progressive Conservatives won a majority government, Doug Ford stressed that "now is the time to unite, now is the time to build Ontario."

"We want to make sure we unite this province, we want to move forward because it's not us versus people down the street, it's Ontario versus very jurisdiction in the world, we're competing for every job, every dollar of investment," Ford said.

He went on to say that it is time to "keep building" in Ontario "for seniors and young families, for drivers and transit riders, for workers looking for a better job."

TORONTO, ON- JUNE 2  -  Doug Ford and his spouse Karla gives his victory speech at the headquarters for Progressive Conservative leader Doug Ford wins his second term as Premier of Ontario with a majority at the Toronto Congress Centre in Toronto. June 2, 2022.        (Steve Russell/Toronto Star via Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON- JUNE 2 - Doug Ford and his spouse Karla gives his victory speech at the headquarters for Progressive Conservative leader Doug Ford wins his second term as Premier of Ontario with a majority at the Toronto Congress Centre in Toronto. June 2, 2022. (Steve Russell/Toronto Star via Getty Images)

Voter turnout raises questions

Doug Ford was asked about voter turnout at 43 per cent - the lowest voter turnout in history - which means that around 20 per cent of Ontarians actually voted for the PCs.

"It's pretty clear, the people gave us a mandate with 83 seats and we're going to focus on our mandate," he said. "We travelled across this province for the last four to five weeks setting a clear direction where we're going with this province."

"We're building highways, we're building bridges, we're building hospitals and schools and we're going to focus on the economy."

When asked about considering a different voting method that would be more representative of Ontario voters, Ford said this system "has worked for a hundred and some odd years."

"It's going to continue to work that way but I'm just so proud of the coalition," he said. "The makeup of our party right across the province,... we've changed the landscape."

This question of low voter turnout in this election also sparked conversations online following the result.

Doug Ford's message to Andrea Horwath, Steven Del Duca

Doug Ford also had specific messages to Andrea Horwath and Steven Del Duca, after they both announced they will be stepping down as leaders of the Ontario NDP and Liberal Party, respectively.

"Thank you for your years of service to the people of Ontario," Ford said about Horwath. "Let there be no doubt that you wake up everyday ready to fight for what you believe in."

"To Steven, you dedicated your life to public service and while we may not have agreed on everything, I know you want nothing but the best for Ontario's future."

As to be expected with any election result, Ontarians from different areas, different occupations, took to social media to comment on the outcome. The most vocal online were the critics of the PC majority government under Ford.

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