Eli Ridder | The Post
Former leader of Ontario’ Progressive Conservatives Patrick Brown said on Sunday he grew the party to unprecedented membership numbers so he should lead it in the June provincial election.
Now an Independent member of provincial parliament, Mr. Brown formally entered the leadership race for the Tories on Friday when he filed papers shortly before the deadline after being kicked from the party the same day.
Brown resigned in January following anonymous allegations of sexual misconduct which he vehemently denies.
Interim leader Vic Fedeli told the caucus that the PC Party is about 67,000 members short of the 200,000 Brown said the party had in January when he was still its leader.
However, during the campaign event in Mississauga, Brown said that specific numbers don’t matter while surrounded by supporters.
He explained that when he took over in 2015, the party had only some 12,000 members but he had brought it up to unprecedented levels “and whether it’s 145,000 or 180,000 or 200,000” it is still the most members the party has had.
Last week, Brown launched an effort to clear his name with a critical Facebook post criticizing the CTV News reporting that broke the allegations and the anonymity of the accusers.
CTV News stands by its reporting and the two women’s claims have not been proven in court.
More details to follow. Image of Patrick Brown at the event on Sunday from Chris Young/Canadian Press.