Rob Ford dips into the provincial politics water—but we were hoping he’d make a bigger splash

Rob Ford dips into the provincial politics water—but we were hoping he’d make a bigger splash

(Image: Shaun Merritt)

The Globe and Mail is reporting that Mayor Rob Ford has “waded into the provincial election campaign”—although we think he’s merely dipping a toe in the water, when we wanted to see a cannonball. In a NewsTalk 1010 interview on Thursday, Ford said it was the province’s responsibility to save 2,000 subsidized daycare spaces from the city’s axe.

The Globe has the details:

Asked about upsetting people who lose a childcare spot, [Ford] squarely blamed the province.

“This has nothing to do with the City of Toronto. That’s all through the provincial government, and I wish in this campaign somebody would tackle the issue about the subsidies to the city on daycare spaces,” he said. “Andrea Horwath, Tim Hudak, Dalton McGuinty, we should be debating, are they going to help the city out.”

Mr. Ford previously raised the same issue in a meeting with Mr. McGuinty, the Liberal Party Leader. This week, city manager Joe Pennachetti listed the daycare program among his recommended budget cuts.

Pressuring the higher tiers of government to pony up for things like daycare and affordable housing is a worthwhile endeavor. The city report released this week does suggest that provincial funding could aid in the rescue of the 2,000 spaces slated for cuts, and apparently Ford has spoken to McGuinty about the issue. But we’re still not sure that Ford is being sincere. When it comes to city services, the mayor has a hierarchy in mind: he called the police force the city’s “most important service” and referred to city-run zoos and theatres as “nonsense.” We might also point out that Ford appears to be contradicting himself. He says reducing the number of daycare spaces will increase efficiency, yet also that the province should still step up and save them.

Ford says city employees are the ‘gravy’ [Toronto Star]
Ford calls on Queen’s Park to pay for daycare [Globe and Mail]
Ford Talks Gravy [NewsTalk 1010]
Rob Ford is interviewed by NewsTalk1010, and it’s kind of important [OpenFile]