I have written previously of Toronto mayor Rob Ford’s various legal problems, including the conflict of interest case he was involved with, caused naturally, by his stubbornness and sense of entitlement. Today, the judge in this conflict of interest case issued his decision: Rob Ford was found guilty of conflict of interest and the judge ordered him removed from office. Robbie has 14 days in which to appeal, which he says he will do, and clean out his office.
The decision leaves city council with a lot of work to do. They have to appoint an interim mayor, in this case it will no doubt be Doug Holyday, the current deputy mayor (and former mayor of one of the communities that was amalgamated into Greater Toronto a few years ago). Then council must then decide whether to appoint one of their current members to complete the term of mayor or call a by-election to choose a new mayor. The by-election will cost the city approximately $7,000,000. The problem with appointing a current councillor is that council has become very polarized under coach Robbie’s lack of leadership, so there could be some interesting discussions should they choose that route.
How are the citizens of Toronto reacting? Well, on the call-in segment of the noon news on CTV Toronto, many of the callers said they voted for Ford, but feel he has become a distraction on city council and are glad he’s gone. One caller went so far as to call him a “buffoon”. Not exactly the description people want to hear applied to their chief magistrate.
Robbie, do the city a huge favour. Don’t appeal the decision. Just clean out your desk and go quietly. The judge did not ban you from running for civic office, so run again in the by-election if you think you can get elected again. Robbie, to use your mantra, “it’s for the kids”. You’ll have more time for the football that always seemed to take precedence over your day job anyway. Too bad your team plays its last game tomorrow.