Rob Ford embarks upon the most predictable year-end media blitz ever

Rob Ford embarks upon the most predictable year-end media blitz ever

(Image: Christopher Drost) 

Rob Ford is wrapping up his year-end interview circuit, having spoken to (most of) the city’s major dailies, along with a few local broadcasters. The media bits are mostly predictable affairs, with Ford repeating things he’s been saying since he ran for office. But there are a few gems hidden among all the talking points. In the Globe, for instance, Ford professes his love for quarterback Tim Tebow. While the interviews are disappointing, it’s worth noting that it’s Ford, not the reporters, who deserves much of the blame here (although not always). Ford’s the one who seems unable to stray from a small smattering of talking points. A roundup of the mayor’s media blitz after the jump.

1. The National Post nails it
Somewhat surprisingly, it’s the National Post that offered arguably the strongest year-end interview with the mayor. Sure, there’s the usual material—the vehicle registration tax, talk about graffiti, various unsubstantiated claims—but there’s lots of good stuff, too. The Post may have endorsed Ford for mayor, but that doesn’t stop its reporter from challenging Ford to explain what he means when he says he’s created jobs or pointing out that his definition of “service cut” is a tad warped. Oh, and the story notes that his math on Sheppard subway extension is way off.

2. The Globe and Mail reveals who Ford’s besties are
The Globe’s rapid-fire Q and A with the mayor makes for a healthy serving of absurdity divvied up in bite-sized morsels. The mayor says he wants to axe 7,000 jobs—“give or take”—and at one point, uses a football analogy to explain transit funding. Then, of course, there’s the mayor’s answer to a question about whether or not he eats his meals at home: “Tim Hortons and McDonald’s have become like best friends.”

3. CP24 lobs the mayor softballs
Stephen LeDrew and his fantastic eyebrows spoke to Ford last week in what looked more like a chummy Christmas chat than, you know, journalism. If Ford’s refusal to budge from his talking points weren’t so illustrative of his careful handling of his message, watching this clip would be completely pointless. Ford also said he gets “30 or 40” invitations to local events each night and expressed his surprise that that many events take place in Toronto.

4. Wait, Ford still talks to the CBC?
The CBC’s interview with Ford was more of the same. We’re just surprised, given that Ford froze out the Star for this, that he’s still talking to the CBC after the whole Marg Delahunty thing.

5. The mayor’s daily newsletter offers exactly what we would expect
The Sun spread their year-end coverage of Ford out over a couple of equally sympathetic articles and videos. Naturally, Ford says what he always says (and even dusts off a tried-and-true line about Kyle Rae’s $12,000 retirement party). Of course, Ford is losing support on council, hoping to pass an impossible budget, and watching his Sheppard fantasies slowly die, but the Sun doesn’t see it that way. According to the paper, he’s not in serious political trouble; he’s “defiant under fire.”

6. The Toronto Star finally lands an interview with Ford
Just kidding. Star reporter Daniel Dale, however, recommends the Post’s interview.