The Globe continues to scrutinize Rob Ford’s campaign finances; Rob Ford continues to come off poorly
The Globe and Mail reported on Saturday that two family-owned businesses—Deco Labels and Tags and Doug Ford Holdings Inc.—cut Rob Ford some serious slack on “goods and services” that amounted to almost 10 per cent of his campaign spending. Although Ford’s team did not repay the two companies for almost a year, they weren’t charged any late penalties—something that’s standard procedure for loans like these—adding another wrinkle to the ongoing saga surrounding Ford’s campaign finances.
From the Globe:
Many suppliers, including the City of Toronto, impose such charges after a 30-to-60-day grace period, typically in the 1 to 2 per cent range, compounded monthly.
With Mr. Ford facing a possible compliance audit, the forgone late charges raise new questions about whether the campaign benefited from an indirect corporate donation worth at least $12,000, according to a Globe and Mail analysis of the campaign’s accounts payable payments. Toronto council policy prevents candidates from accepting corporate or trade union contributions.
What’s most interesting is how clearly the mayor’s behaviour appears to clash with the everyman image he cultivated as a councillor. At city hall and on the campaign trail, Ford insisted that financial matters were simple. But regardless of whether Ford has broken the law or not, his behaviour suggests that he financed his campaign in the most convoluted way possible. And if it turns out that if Ford didn’t seek competitive bids for a printing contract with Deco, he would have engaged in exactly the kind of sole sourcing that he once railed against.
But the most significant slight to Ford’s image may be the fundraising that could become necessary in order to finance his ongoing legal battle. Taxpayers might respect Ford’s fiscal conservatism, but the image of a mayor fundraising tens of thousands of dollars for a court battle may not resonate with the average Torontonian.