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Rob Ford running for Toronto council; brother Doug running for mayor

CityNews | posted Friday, Sep 12th, 2014

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Rob Ford’s brother Doug Ford has jumped into the Toronto mayoral race after the ailing mayor dropped out just an hour before the nomination deadline closed on Friday afternoon.

Rob Ford, 45, is now running for a council seat in Ward 2, Etobicoke North, one that he held for a decade before he became mayor in 2010. His older brother filed his nomination papers to run for mayor shortly after at city hall and had only this to say: “I’m good. I’m signed in and 100 per cent running for mayor.”.

Their nephew, Michael Ford, who was running for councillor in Ward 2, withdrew his nomination and filed to run as a Toronto District School Board trustee in Ward 1.

The mayor, who remains in hospital with an abdominal tumour, withdrew from the Toronto mayoral race shortly before 1 p.m.

In a statement, he said, “My heart is heavy when I tell you that I’m unable to continue my campaign for re-election as your Mayor.

“Now I could be facing a battle of my lifetime, and I want the people of Toronto to know that I intend to face this challenge head on, and win.”

But he said that while he was unable to commit to the heavy schedule required of a mayoral candidate he would still run for councillor in Ward 2 while focusing on getting better.

Doug Ford said he’d speak about his mayoral bid at 7 p.m. from his mother Diane’s home in Etobicoke. Mayoral rivals Olivia Chow and John Tory weren’t immediately available for comment. But they both planned to speak later in the afternoon.

On Wednesday, doctors discovered the mayor had a “fair size” abdominal tumour after he went to Humber River Hospital for unbearable abdominal pain, an issue he faced for about three months.

It remains unclear whether the tumour, which was biopsied on Thursday, is cancerous. Results wouldn’t be available for about a week, his Mount Sinai Hospital Dr. Zane Cohen said after he was transferred there for further tests.

Dr. Cohen, an internationally recognized colorectal surgeon, said Ford was resting comfortably and had some pain, for which he was receiving medication. Ford had abdominal surgery in 2009 to remove a tumour on his appendix. His father, Doug Ford Sr., died of colon cancer in 2006.

Ford has faced a series of drug, alcohol and other scandals over the past 18 months but had been a viable contender for mayor.

He was trailing rival candidate Tory in the most recent polls by Forum Research and Nanos Research.

Voters head to the polls on Oct. 27.

Click here for CityNews’ special on mayoral candidates and here for the official candidates list.

With files from The Canadian Press

Statement

As many of you know I’ve been dealing with a serious medical issue, the details of which are unknown. But I know that with the love and support of my family, I will get through this.

I want to thank the residents of Toronto for your wishes and prayers and I also want to thank the amazing staff at Humber River Hospital and Mount Sinai Hospital for the care and compassion you have shown, not just me, but all the people who come here to get better.

People know me as a guy who faces things head on and never gives up, and as your Mayor I have done just that. I derailed the gravy train, cut unnecessary spending and made government more accountable. I did this by facing these challenges head on.

Now I could be facing a battle of my lifetime, and I want the people of Toronto to know that I intend to face this challenge head on, and win.

With the advice of my family and doctors I know I need to focus on getting better. There is much work to be done and I can’t give it my all at this point in time.

My heart is heavy when I tell you that I’m unable to continue my campaign for re-election as your Mayor.

While I’m unable to commit to the heavy schedule required for a Mayoral candidate I will not turn my back on Ward 2. I will be running as Councillor of Ward 2, to represent the fine folks that have become my neighbours and friends over these past 14 years.

Four years ago we made history. With your help we started a movement that would take back our city.

I was not alone in this, my big brother Doug was by my side, sharing my vision, fighting for the great people of Toronto. I never could have accomplished what we did without him.

Doug loves our city as much as I do. He believes that standing up for the average person and watching the bottom line are what matters most at City Hall.

Doug also believes in standing up for his family no matter what. His loyalty and willingness to be there for anyone, anytime is just who he is.

I’ve asked Doug to finish what we started together, so that all we’ve accomplished isn’t washed away.

I have asked Doug to run to become the next Mayor of Toronto, because we need him. We cannot go backwards.

I love our city and I love being your Mayor. It has been an honour and a privilege to serve you.

For the past four years I have gotten up everyday thinking about our great city and how to make life just a little bit better for each of you.

To anyone facing a serious health challenge, I wish you strength and courage on your journey, you are not alone.

Hope is a powerful thing. With hope, support and determination I know I will beat this, not just for my family, but for YOU, Toronto.

My family and I thank you for your continued support and prayers. God bless.

–Rob Ford

Comments

  • Linda Strother-Bynoe says:

    Very sad, must mean his health is in jeopardy. My thoughts go out to He and all of his family. I wish him a speedy recovery.

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