On the eve of the Ford ruling, Daniel Dale warned in the Toronto Star that a court decision ending Rob Ford’s “unlikely mayoralty” would launch Toronto into “unprecedented uncertainty.” Instead, today’s ruling launched Toronto’s government into something else: at least two more years of Rob Ford.
In the words of the law:
“In light of our conclusion that Decision CC 52.1 was a nullity because of the nature of the financial sanction it imposed, the appellant has not contravened s. 5(1) of the MCIA. Therefore, the appeal is allowed, the judgment of the application judge is set aside and the application under the MCIA is dismissed.”
In English: Victory, thy name is Rob Ford.
(Or as one of my online stalkers used to write me three times a day until HR blocked him from our email list: ALL HAIL KING FORD.)
Bikers beware (not the cool kind): From mayor to ex-mayor to temporary mayor to official mayor once more: Ford Nation lives on.
Mayor Ford appeared at a city hall press conference to thank his family and the supporters who stood by him in “restaurants and gas stations.” I sat at Ford’s feet-—at least a few feet away—as he spoke about his newfound humility:
“This has been a very, very humbling experience. I have an enormous respect for the judicial system and I’m very, very thankful for the decision it made today.”
“We have spent the last two years doing exactly what we said we will do. Over the next two years, we will focus on getting the rest of the job done.”
Translation: METRO BOWL CHAMPIONS 2014-15
A reporter asked Ford if he’d learned from the experience. He said something to the effect of, yes, I’ve learned how many supporters I have–some of whom didn’t even vote for me. Other questions were answered like this: “You know, gotta stay focused.” The eloquence of Roberto Luongo and the humility of Lance Armstrong. Who could ask for more from a mayor?
Of course, this is only the beginning. Ford ensured everyone he’d win his second term; he alluded to “the next six years.” I’m pulling for 60. (I have a lot to thank him for.)
In the end, as in his favourite pastime, it could be said Ford got off on a technicality. The court ruled City Council out of bounds in its request that the mayor reimburse his football donors. So not a vindication but a “nullity,” the judicial version of “we can’t call you a cheater because the game you were playing didn’t count.” The mayor’s critics can take solace in the fact Ford wasn’t deemed virtuous. He can’t say definitively, no matter how deeply he may believe it, they were wrong and I was right. And now, he may never have to.