TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 4, 2010) - John Capobianco, campaign co-chair for Toronto mayoral candidate Rocco Rossi, today issued this statement regarding an article in today's Globe and Mail by reporter Kelly Grant:
"I am proud to be a co-chair of Rocco Rossi's mayoral campaign. I want Rocco Rossi to be mayor of Toronto; that's why I have been on the campaign since the beginning and why I am staying on this campaign until October 25.
"Kelly Grant reports in today's Globe and Mail that I attended a meeting with Nick Kouvalis, deputy campaign manager for Rob Ford, and discussed leaving the Rossi campaign for the Ford camp.
"The story contains numerous errors, unsubstantiated rumours from unnamed sources and is a biased account of a meeting that did take place.
"Last week, on my way home from work downtown to my home in Etobicoke, I stopped by the Ford family's place of business, Deco Labels and Tags. I did not meet, nor have I ever met Mr. Kouvalis in a Tim Hortons coffee shop as Ms Kelly reports in her story.
"I have known the Ford family for many years and Rob Ford has supported me in my federal campaigns in the riding of Etobicoke Lakeshore in 2004 and 2006. Rob Ford has canvassed for me and I consider him a personal friend. Rob attended my father's funeral late last year.
"The chat at Deco Labels last week lasted 35 minutes. Attending were myself, Nick Kouvalis and Doug Ford. Ms Grant reports that only Nick Kouvalis attended from the Ford side—another error on her part. Nick and I occasionally chat about politics in general and this election in particular.
"I dropped by at Nick's invitation. During our chat I was asked if the mayoral candidate I support, Rocco Rossi, might drop out of the race. I replied that he was not dropping out. I was then asked if, in the event he did, I would consider joining the Ford campaign. I replied that it was a hypothetical situation and difficult to speculate, but my inclination would be to do so in the event that Rocco left the race. I emphasized that Rocco was in the race until Election Day and I was with him to the end.
"I was also asked if I thought anyone else from the Rossi campaign would come over with me in the event Rocco dropped out. I replied that while it was hard to say, I'm sure there would be some. I repeated that at this point our focus and our discussions within the Rossi campaign are never anything but that Rocco is staying to the end.
"Ms Grant reports that I asked about the Ford camp paying for Rossi staff if he dropped out. That is a complete fabrication and entirely untrue. We did not speak about money at all and I am well aware that as a co-chair I have no right to talk about staff, finance or anyone else's intentions in this race.
"Finally, during the discussion Nick Kouvalis said to me 'I'd prefer that Rocco stay in the race to the end.'"
"Key principals in this discussion have all vehemently denied the Ms Grant's version of this meeting. I am extremely disappointed that such a highly respected publication as the Globe and Mail would publish a story with so many factual errors and reliance on unnamed sources and would disregard the denials of key participants at the encounter."
For further information media should contact John Capobianco at 416-727-7969.