The Final Hour.

In one hour the whole Mayoral race changed.

Rob out, Doug in.

How did it get to this? Let’s recap what happened.

A few days ago Rob Ford was brought to Humber River Hospital (Ward 7) after going to the doctor. He was experiencing pain in his abdomen. The doctor instructed him to go to the hospital. He did. He was diagnosed to have an abdominal tumor. Doctors were not sure whether it was cancerous or not. (Still has yet to be determined. Results should be in next week). The clock was ticking. Friday at 2pm is the deadline to submit and/or remove your name from the ballot to run for Mayor, Councillor, or Trustee. Everyone was wishing Rob well. Whether you disagreed with his politics or agree with them. Everyone wanted to have a healthy man at the end of the day.

But the question was still there. Looming in the air. Can Rob Ford continue on? And if not should he drop?

12:45pm: Jeff Silverstein (Rob Ford’s Communications Director) walks into the Clerk’s office for Elections. He pulls Rob Ford’s name out of the Mayor’s Race. Along with Michael Ford’s name for city councillor in Ward 2. It also included speculation that Doug Ford will run in his place.

1:15pm: Jeff Silverstein attempts to sign Doug Ford up for Mayor. Fails, missing additional paperwork.

1:25pm: Doug Ford arrives at city hall. Files in person to run for Mayor of Toronto. Jeff Silverstein also files Rob Ford to run in Ward 2, and Michael Ford for Toronto District School Board Trustee in Ward 1.

1:30pm: Everything is finalized. 30 minutes till deadline to remove or add name to ballot.

1:45pm: Doug Ford says “Yes, I am running for Mayor”

2:00pm: Ballot is officially closed. No names can be removed or added.

Within a full hour. The complete race for the seat of Mayor has changed. Was this expected? No.

How about a super quick recap.

1. Rob Ford drops out of the race for Mayor. Registers for his former council seat (Currently held by Doug Ford).

2. Doug Ford registers to run for Mayor.

3. Michael Ford drops out of the race to run for Council. Now running for TDSB Trustee in Ward 1.

Now that Doug Ford is running for Mayor, everything changes for their campaign. Doug cannot use any of the money raised for Rob Ford’s campaign (Including the $60 I spent for 2 bobbleheads). Doug must start from $0. He cannot use Rob Ford’s campaign offices. Must open his own. Merchandise from Rob’s campaign can be used. But must be bought for the original price.

But now everyone has the question in the back of their mind… Can Doug Ford run Canada’s largest city? Doug has only 1 term of councillor experience under his belt. Compared to Rob, he had 10 years (3 terms). Doug Ford isn’t Rob Ford 2.0, they have the same policies and beliefs. But the history behind the two are different. Doug never smoked crack cocaine while in office and became an overnight international sensation. There was no full police investigation on his personal life. But Doug has had is share of bad press. Maybe not as bad as Rob, but it was enough to create a stir. He apparently insulted those who are autistic. He accused the Chief of Police on being a liar. And he has been accused of being a marijuana dealer back in high school (which he denied).

But compared to Rob Ford’s slurs, lies, and drug use… it’s almost nothing. You can even say he might be the better of two evils.

Back in April, I had a sit down interview with Doug Ford in his office. (Will post some clips below)On camera, he was honest. But fell off the tracks most of the time. I had 15 questions set. I expected the interview to go for thirty minutes or less. It ended up taking an hour and a half, plus a tour of the Mayor’s office. By the way the interview I was going, I felt the passion Doug had for the job he currently holds. He seemed to care about everyone’s well being. At the end of it, he even offered me an opportunity to work on the Rob Ford Campaign as Director of Communications. He gave me his personal cell phone number to call him to set up a talk over coffee. I emailed his office back with my resume after debating whether I should apply or not. His secretary said they placed the email onto his desk. And I never heard a reply back. (It’s okay. At least I don’t have to be Jeff Silverstein) But Doug always talked about his brother and how his brother was doing this, doing that. Making the city better. There’s no doubt that him and his brother aren’t working together to create better infrastructure in the city. Doug had a giant check on his back wall for a park donated straight from his pocket.

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The question still stands, is he ready to be Mayor? Personally, I don’t believe so. If he gets elected there is no doubt that Rob will be behind all his decisions as Mayor. Rob might even become the head of his war room. The Ford brothers are like two strings from a single stick of Cheese String. They are practically the same when it comes to their policies.

But what will happen for Rob in Ward 2? There is no doubt in my mind that Rob Ford will take at least 75% of the vote in Ward 2. Even if Rob doesn’t get up from his hospital bed till October 27th, he will win. The Ford name has been in that Ward for over a decade, and it’s not going anywhere. For Andray Domise running in Ward 2, he had a glimpse of hope when Michael Ford was running. Michael Ford is 21 years old with a High School Diploma. But now there is seriously no chance he will win this seat, yet he continues to campaign. Speaking to my candidate, rumor has it that one of the candidates for Ward 2 wanted to draw out, but the time was too short. He has decided to quit and just leave his name on the ballot.

At the end of the day, I feel bad for Mayor Rob Ford. He basically “quit” his job as Mayor. You’d think a Mayor who lived through all the scandals, the drugs, and the racial slurs could make it all the way to the finish line, but a tumor ends it all for him.

I sincerely hope that Mayor Ford returns with a full bill of health. I can only imagine what happened to Jack Layton, could happen to Rob.

If Rob Ford stayed in the race and won, then they find out the tumor was cancerous, I personally believe that he would repeat the same timeline Jack Layton went through.

Win the election out of no where, announce you have cancer, step down temporarily, and pass away weeks later.

I never want to wish death to anyone. But this is what I thought would happened. So I believe it was a smart thing to do by dropping out and running for a less stressful job. And if Rob cannot continue on with his job as an elected councillor for Ward 2, he can step down and the Ward could have a by-election (Less costly)

The Ford strategy was an amazing one. To keep the Ford name at City Hall and in the Mayor’s Chair. This is one thing I will guarantee. There will be a Ford inside the council chambers in December.

We will just have to wait and see.

Notes:

  • If Doug Ford wins, I could easily say that I arranged a sit down interview with the Mayor of Toronto, before he was Mayor. (Just thought that would be interesting to say)
  • My interview with Doug Ford: 
  • If you want to discuss my post, please comment!
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