Toronto Mayor Rob Ford at City Council.
Credits: VERONICA HENRI/QMI AGENCY
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford is the Tim Tebow of politics.
Like Tebow, Ford gets results but he doesn't get the mechanics exactly right. He isn't the smooth operator the "experts" want to see.
Ford's problems revolve around football. He awaits a judge's decision regarding money he raised for his football foundation using City of Toronto letterhead, refusing to repay the money, which did not benefit him, and then improperly voting in the decision made by council to let him off the hook on repayment.
A judge could remove him from office.
Now, he's accused of using his office staff to work on his football programs.
A comparison to NFL quarterback Tebow seems apt.
Many of Tebow's detractors seem to hate that he leans toward traditional right-wing values. He is religious, spends some of his off time doing missionary work, was home schooled and did a pro-life Super Bowl ad.
Meanwhile, Ford is a fiscal conservative. That's why the left hates him. They have been trying to bring him down on rules violations for years. In 2007, he was actually investigated for not spending any of his $53,000 office budget.
As the New York Times once reported about Tebow, quoting Greg Cosell, executive producer of ESPN's scouting-based "NFL Matchup" show, "His mechanics are very poor and that may never change." Similarly, Ford isn't smooth. His political mechanics are poor. He doesn't wow ‘em at the arts banquet. He's not their kind of people. The leftists on council and in the media see themselves as sophisticated, smooth operators.
In Denver last year Tebow, despite his "poor mechanics," put up a great record running, throwing and winning. Denver made the playoffs. Most teams did not.
Similarly, Ford stumbles, he calls audibles no one else seems to hear. But in the end, he delivers on what he was voted in to do.
Ford won labour peace beyond the upcoming Pan Am Games, without giving away the treasury or going to war with the public sector unions.
Both tactics were employed by Premier Dalton McGuinty, yet he remains a smooth favorite of the lefty experts.
Ford has successfully contracted out half the city's garbage collection. None of the smooth lefties on council even considered it. Savings are expected to be $11 million annually.
Ford delivered the first city budget in memory that spent less money than the year before. Former mayor David Miller exploded the size of the city government, with little discernible improvement in the life of the average person. Miller was also a smooth leftie.
Despite his college and NFL success, Tebow was unloaded by the Denver Broncos. He's now the back-up for Mark Sanchez of the New York Jets.
Ford may be terminated, or lose what public good will he has left, if it's proven he is wrongly using city staff to work on his football programs. He denies it and the onus is now on his accusers. Ford is innocent until proven guilty.
Denver may have success with Payton Manning at quarterback, if Manning still has his magic.
Toronto will survive without Ford, but if councillors like Adam Vaughan get their way and sideline him, we'll have a lot more money taken out of our pockets by people who have those mechanics perfected.