Thousands of people gathered earlier today at the Toronto Congress Centre to help launch Mayor Rob Ford’s re-election campaign for the 2014 Toronto mayoral race.
The event was scheduled to start at 6:30 p.m., but the crowd started to line up shortly after 4 p.m. and by the time the doors opened there were already many people waiting. As with every event involving Rob Ford, the attendees resembled a true rainbow of every race and ethnicity living in Toronto.
The first 1,000 people received free t-shirts from the campaign. There were also drinks and food. Since that was also a fundraiser, the organizers had for sale, along with the usual buttons and stickers, a large number of the Rob Ford bobbleheads.
There was even a fire truck decorated with Rob Ford’s slogans.
A band played rock music for the most of the evening. The crowd met with applause the great George Chuvalo, who appeared for a few minutes onstage.
After that Doug Ford, who is the manager of the campaign, talked for a while, introducing the platform of Rob Ford.
Rob Ford made a spectacular entrance – the crowd of supporters, volunteers and security, which surrounded him, was led by a band of bagpipers. It took them some time to reach the scene. His speech was interrupted many times by cries of support.
In his speech Ford explained that he was determined to run for the mayor’s office again. He didn’t miss the opportunity to take a jibe at the media for throwing mud at him. He expressed the hope that his supporters believe in giving second chances. Ford emphasized that it has been very difficult to fulfill his promises to cut spending at City Hall because of the fierce resistance – however, that was the job that he was elected to do. The respect for the taxpayers was a principle standing above anything else.
He also explained that he served everybody, not the elites or some special interest groups. His message really resonated with the huge crowd.
Unfortunately, I am absolutely sure that the media is going to ignore the event or attempt to present it as some gathering of idiots, who don’t know how excellent the mayoral candidates that the elites have chosen for them are.
In the car on our way back we listened to a radio station covering the event. One of the journalists condescendingly explained that Ford was peddling the same stale message about respect for taxpayers and saving money. The Canadian media class is truly clueless – for most of us saving on taxes is an issue that is always important. If you can’t understand that, you can’t understand Rob Ford’s appeal. The media could peddle any flamboyant candidacy, which could get a standing ovation at a gay bar, but won’t excite anybody who actually works for a living.
Here is a short video with the highlights from the campaign’s launch:
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