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Orlikow announces mayoral run

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The list of potential candidates for mayor got a little more crowded this morning.

River Heights councillor John Orlikow confirmed he will run for the top job in the Oct. 22 election.

"I've still got to dot a few 'I's and cross a few 'T's, but yeah." Orlikow said. "Our intention is to run."

Orlikow’s entry adds some confusion to the centre/left wing spectrum.

Former New Democrat MP and MLA Judy Wasylycia-Leis is mulling another run for mayor – she finished second to Katz in 2010 – and early polls show she can beat a crowd of right-wing candidates.

Wasylycia-Leis has invited supporters of her 2010 campaign to a public meeting Feb. 2, to discuss the campaign, her chances of running again, and other possible progressive candidates.

Orlikow said he’s not worried about Wasylycia-Leis as a candidate, adding polls show her support has stalled at 45 per cent – about the same level she had when she lost to Katz in 2010.

Orlikow said his polling shows he can easily out-draw Wasylycia-Leis against a field of right-wing candidates.

"I don’t think anyone should be trying to run (for mayor) to get less than 50 per cent," Orlikow said. "My numbers indicate I can achieve that goal with everything working right. My goal is 70 per cent (of the vote). I don’t want to win with 30 per cent."

The only declared candidate for mayor so far is former St. Vital councillor Gord Steeves. However, others from the right/centre-right spectrum who are considering include councillors Scott Fielding (St. James-Brooklands) and Paula Havixbeck (Charleswood-Tuxedo), and privacy lawyer Brian Bowman.

Fielding has said he will not run again as a councillor.

Orlikow said before he makes his candidacy official, he will find a suitable replacement as councillor.

"I want to make sure I have a good candidate here to represent the neighbourhood well," Orlikow said. "I’m in that process now."

 

aldo.santin@freepress.mb.ca

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