Monday, 26 November 2012

Hackland Ruling Not About The $3,150

The ruling by Justice Charles T. Hackland was not about the $3150 that Toronto Mayor Rob Ford improperly solicited for his football team but about his arrogant and stubborn insistence that he is above the law.

Matters of law regarding conflict of interest can be subject of interpretation and if after being found to have acted improperly by the city's integrity commissioner Ford had stated that he simply misunderstood the rules and apologized and repaid the funds as ordered that would have been the end of it.

But Mayor Ford did not misunderstand the rules, he totally ignored them by being wilfully ignorant of them. Mayor Ford as a city councillor and as mayor should have been aware of the concept of conflict of interest and should have read city council's code of conduct. To have total disregard for the rules that apply to such a position of trust is inexcusable.

The Mayor then went on to not only attend the Council meeting dealing with the matter but engaged in discussion and voted on the matter, an act that even the least informed follower of municipal affairs understands is a conflict of interest. For an elected official to claim he did not understand that is truly unthinkable and unbelievable and the court did not believe the "I really am that stupid" defence.

While Rob Ford may have a right to appeal this decision, any politician with any integrity in these circumstances would ask to be relieved of his duties and have the Deputy Mayor take over the functions of the Mayor until he cleared his name. But Rob Ford has throughout this debacle and his whole career shown that he has no integrity at all and it will be up to Toronto City Council to relieve Rob Ford of all his duties and responsibilities as Mayor.

There is no conspiracy here. It is simply Rob Ford's continuous unprofessional conduct that has brought him to where he is.

The principles involved here are way more important than the $3,150.

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