At 11:00 am today, Adam Giambrone held a press conference at which he profusely apologised to his supporters, to his personal partner, and to his fellow Councillors for the recent revelations about his personal life and his mishandling of the response. Then he left the podium.
A few minutes later, his Executive Assistant, Kevin Beaulieu, return to read the full statement in which Giambrone announced that he was withdrawing from the mayoralty race, but would remain as Councillor for Ward 18 and Chair of the TTC. He wants to address the renaissance of the TTC and the building of Transit City.
Whether he actually gets to do this remains to be seen. The Commission will meet next week, and it is possible that a vote of non-confidence will end Giambrone’s role as Chair. His opponents may use this opportunity to tar much of what he and others in Mayor Miller’s camp have achieved with transit, and that would be a terrible mistake. Those changes, those policies exist not just because of Giambrone, but because many Councillors, the Mayor, Queen’s Park and countless members of the public recognize that transit in Toronto must improve. The Chair may pass to another Councillor, but the organization and the goals remain.
The TTC is in desperate need of clear, unambiguous leadership from someone who inspires confidence and trust, from someone whose word can be believed, whose announcements are not second-guessed as photo ops for a political campaign.
I have been a long-time supporter and advisor to Adam Giambrone, but my view is that he must step down.