Saturday, May 25, 2013
Who's Advising Him?

"Hardly a day goes by when senior staff in the mayor’s office aren’t called by so-called expert strategists and told what to do.

Even members of the public call the mayor’s customer service staff, advising them on how to handle the media.

Ford’s staff bite their tongues and politely listen to this advice, the vast majority of which would be impossible to implement because, let’s face it, this is hardly a normal mayoralty.

For example in March, Sun City Hall Bureau Chief Don Peat reported the mayor had shown up at an event 'between local politicians and the Toronto Eruv committee, organized by Coun. James Pasternak.'

Typically, this wouldn’t make much news but it did because the mayor came ill-prepared and gave a barn-burner of a pro-casino speech to an Orthodox Jewish audience.

Had he informed his senior staff he was going to attend, they would have given him a scroll to present to these community leaders, briefed him on who would be there and given him prepared -- and appropriate -- remarks.

Recently, after being briefed on all the proper protocols, the mayor missed an event when Prince Phillip came to Toronto. An event he was clearly expected to attend, since a chair with his name on it sat empty.

And, since I have your attention, the mayor’s staff did not advise him to call the police on a reporter checking out his property regarding his application to buy an adjacent piece of land from the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority.

The mayor’s staff did not advise him to call 911 when a plastic sword-wielding Marg Delahunty (aka Mary Walsh) ambushed him on his driveway. (I dealt with that one when I was Ford’s Press Secretary.)

His staff didn’t tell him to hand out magnets at a community meeting in Etobicoke, though it is worth noting the staff member that did help the mayor on that one is new to the office and, according to the Globe and Mail, allegedly sold drugs in high school with Doug Ford. (Ford has denied this allegation.)

What his current and former experienced staffers have advised him to do is to get a driver, stop calling constituents late at night, get some rest, and as the Sun reported, go to rehab."

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