So that’s how he does it…

First published 01 August 2006.

Major kudos to Eye Weekly for answering the question that has been on my mind ever since a certain big-boned city councillor got drunk and disorderly at a Maple Leafs game:  how the hell does Rob Ford keep getting elected?

I have to admit I found Ford funny during the early days of amalgamation.  He and Mayor Lastman would often end up in unintelligible screaming matches during council sessions.  I had hoped that at some point it would devolve into a hockey fight, or at least a staged WWE-style fight, and then we’d have the endless speculation on which councillors would turn “heels” (bad guys) and which former heels would become “faces” (good guys).

Sadly Mayor Mel and a whole slew of councillors retired (or were promoted up to their level of incompetence by the electorate), and city council is a much less riveting place today.  I had all but forgetten about Ford when he stumbled onto the local media’s radar again this May by behaving boorishly at a hockey game.  Again I asked myself, how can such a buffoon be re-elected so many times?  What do the residents of Etobicoke know that the rest of the city does not?  Surely an entire ward cannot be such dunderheads.

    Walking around Etobicoke, he’s approached every minute or so by people thanking him for the help he’s provided or telling him to stay the course on his penny-pinching. If constituents don’t approach him, he goes to them, telling them to call him if they need anything.

Rob Ford may be a raving lunatic, but he’s a raving lunatic who will come to your home and stand in the rain to ensure you get 15 minutes with the city staffer who can help you. And that, as anyone who’s tried to navigate the city hall bureaucracy will know, is no small thing…

A deep thinker he is not, and that could be a problem for his opponents. Rob Ford only has two priorities: saving money and serving constituents. Crazy as he appears, those happen to be popular priorities. Besides, he doesn’t need to think; he’s out impressing the voters every day with his actions.

The people who want to beat him might want to start thinking about that.

Edward Keenan, “The Rob Ford Problem“,
Eye Weekly, 27 July 2006.

Stellar and balanced work by reporter Keenan, exposing the good, the bad and the ugly of this very controversial municipal politician.  It ain’t pretty but it is interesting.  If you’re a follower of Torontonian politics, or just want to know what Ford’s constituents see in the man, read the whole thing.

Category: Miscellania  Tags: ,
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