Fringe Toronto mayoral candidate Gong demands recount despite losing by over 266K votes

Despite losing to winner Olivia Chow by a whopping 266,389 votes in Monday’s byelection, fringe Toronto mayoral candidate Xiao Hua Gong is asking for a recount.

In a tweet on Tuesday afternoon, Gong thanked his supporters but questioned the validity of the results, which saw Chow fend off a surging Ana Bailão to claim the city’s top job with 37.17 per cent of the vote.

Gong ended the evening with 2,983 votes, which represented 0.41 per cent.

“We question this mayoral result and believe it’s crucial to ensure the voting was accurate and fair,” Gong tweeted.

“Hence, we’re asking for a recount.”

The results of the election were certified by the city clerk on Wednesday.

Toronto Elections tells CityNews that the Municipal Elections Act outlines the following conditions for a recount.

  • Two or more candidates receive the same number of votes and cannot both or all be declared elected to the office;
  • City Council and/or the Minister pass a resolution or order within 30 days of the City Clerk’s declaration of results requiring a recount of the votes cast for an office on City Council.
  • The Superior Court of Justice orders the Clerk to hold a recount in response to an application for order for recount filed within 30 days of the City Clerk’s declaration of results.

Gong, who plastered the city with signs, has a background in business, including manufacturing health supplements, creating media channels, commercial property and running beauty pageants.

He’s also no stranger to controversy — accused of being involved in a pyramid scheme. While charges against him were ultimately dropped, his company was convicted and fined in Ontario.

That led him to sue the Ontario Securities Commission for $7 million just a few months ago. That matter is now before the courts.

Gong also forfeited more than $60 million to the New Zealand government after an investigation into his business dealings there.

Gong’s demand for a recount was largely met with ridicule online.

With files from Mark McAllister of CityNews

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