Six city hall observers worth following on Twitter in order to keep up with today’s executive committee meeting at city hall

Six city hall observers worth following on Twitter in order to keep up with today’s executive committee meeting at city hall

(Image: Robert Scarth) 

Mayor Rob Ford and his executive committee are in the early stages of what we assume is the political equivalent of a root canal. Some 300-odd concerned Toronto citizens have signed up to give deputations on city manager Joe Pennachetti’s proposed service cuts, and the process could very well turn into an all nighter (just like the one we saw earlier this summer). So far, there have been reports of children singing “Old MacDonald” and much chiding of the mayor’s mispronunciation of the word “library” (in Ford-speak, apparently, “lie-berry”). For those that are in it for the long haul, we present a list of six city hall observers that can help you better understand the proceedings and follow along with the day’s action (heck, you might even laugh, or, you know, learn something).

1. Don Peat, Toronto Sun
Twitter: @reporterdonpeat
Ford lover or Ford hater:
Lover (or, at least, his employer is—big time)
Why you should follow: This morning, Peat tweeted, “Uh oh. I seem to have maxed out my Twitter for iPad app.” This isn’t surprising, coming from one of the few observers to tweet the last marathon executive meeting in its entirety. His paper’s support for Rob Ford often borders on ridiculous, so he’s sure to offer one of the steadiest streams of tweets from today’s meeting.

2. Marcus Gee, Globe and Mail
Twitter: @marcusbgee
Ford lover or Ford hater: Spurned lover, now hater
Why you should follow: The man has one fast pair of thumbs. So far today, the Globe’s Toronto columnist has offered us a Lionel Richie joke and the hashtag #thisisgettingross.

3. Jonathan Goldsbie, micro blogger
Twitter: @goldsbie
Ford lover or Ford hater: Hater
Why you should follow: Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti once referred to Jonathan Goldsbie as “Comrade Twitter,” which should give you an idea of both his political leanings and his proficiency in the micro blogging medium. Goldsbie might be the only city hall observer whose smart-mouthed tweets earned him a shiny new smartphone.

4. Matt Elliot, blogger
Twitter: @GraphicMatt
Ford lover or Ford hater: Hater
Why you should follow: Elliott has been less prolific than Peat today—we hear he has a pesky little thing called a day job—but look for smart analysis to follow on his blog. He frequently critiques Ford’s policies with things like reason and numbers, which can be harder to find at city hall than you might think.

5. Hamutal Dotan, Torontoist
Twitter: @torontoist
Ford lover or Ford hater:
Hater
Why you should follow: Dotan is one of the more reliable city hall tweeters. She’ll be doggedly updating readers about the meeting’s progress throughout the day—you know, in case you’re scheduled to speak and want to time your arrival.

6. Paul Ainslie, Toronto Councillor
Twitter: @cllrainslie
Ford lover or Ford hater: Lover (sometimes)
Why you should follow: We’ve heard Twitter tends to lean to the left, at least when it comes to Toronto civic politics, but Ainslie often hops on the Twitter box to spar with the corps of city hall lefties.

City Hall budget cuts [Toronto Star]
Live Blog: Mayor-a-thin—Part II [Toronto Sun]
Live Now: The Globe tweets from Toronto’s committee hearing on budget cuts LIVE [Globe and Mail]