The Sun fluffs Ford’s numbers

The Sun fluffs Ford’s numbers

There’s been quite a bit made of the fact that, with his easy victory in a high-turnout election, Rob Ford has received more votes than any other single politician in Canadian history. The Toronto Sun ran exactly that story this morning, quoting a University of Toronto academic. “‘Nobody in the history of Canada has ever gotten as many votes in any election as Rob Ford,’ said University of Toronto Professor Nelson Wiseman.”

There’s just one problem here: this isn’t true.

While the mayor-elect has nothing to be ashamed of in his win, he is still outgunned in the vote-getting department by Mel Lastman, who not only got more votes in his 1997 run against Barbara Hall, but also ran away with Toronto Bike Month Never mind the larger question of whether it’s relevant that millions of voters across the country might be voting “for” Stephen Harper even if they don’t get to do so directly (technically, he’s only voted for by the people in his riding).

The Sun corrected the on-line story this morning, which can be found here. But while we’re dealing in superlatives, here’s one that is true: in the history of the world, it’s never been easier to do basic research before publishing something.

• Rob Ford sets Canadian vote record  [Toronto Sun]
• 1997 Toronto general election results [Toronto Official Website]
• Toronto Bike Month
• 2010 Toronto general election results [Toronto Official Website]