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Newsstand: September 20, 2010

Illustration by Matt Daley/Torontoist.

Monday has never looked so good! Here’s all the news that’s fit to recall: Ford slays the competition, Brampton’s buses get Euro, and TIFF is no more.

There’s really no other way to say this than to just come out and say it: Rob Ford is absolutely destroying the competition in the run-up to this fall’s mayoral election. The results of a new poll released last night reveal that Ford has captured a commanding twenty-four-point lead over his closest rival, George Smitherman. Ford has gained most of the undecided voters since the time of the last Nanos poll in June, and now has the backing of 45.8% of decided voters, while Smitherman sits at 21.3%. The other major three candidates saw little change in their numbers, with Joe Pantalone at 16.8%, Rocco Rossi at 9.7%, and Sarah Thomson at 6.4%. Prognosticators say Ford’s competition’s only hope is that the always colourful councillor somehow self-implodes in the next five weeks, though, if the public’s reaction to the many controversies that have thus far plagued his campaign are any indication, that may only make him stronger.
Alleged G20 organizer Alex Hundert thought he was participating in a civil panel at Ryerson Unversity about the impact of the G20 on the progressive movement. Not so, say the Toronto Police. According to the boys in blue, he was participating in a public demonstration—a breach of his bail conditions. Hundert was arrested shortly after the panel discussion on Friday evening and taken to Toronto West Detention centre, where he awaits a hearing date.
Brampton’s transit system is going European, and they’ve even got the umlaut to prove it. Züm is the name of Brampton’s new line of buses, which include such luxurious amenities as plush seats, heated shelters, and laptop plugins. Mississauga also has upgrade plans, and will unveil their new “MiWay” buses on October 4. Züm’s designers say the glam-new buses are designed to coax suburban dwellers with three cars in the garage to ditch their vehicles and give public transit a try.
If you were standing on Grosvenor Street this past Saturday afternoon, you may have noticed a gentle sprinkling from the heavens—not of water, but of glass. A pane from the thirty-first floor of the Murano building at 37 Grosvenor Street broke this weekend, raining broken glass down onto the street below. No one knows why it broke, but the property manager says the glass is specially designed to shatter into tiny pieces to reduce the chance of injuring someone should it break. No one was injured and engineers are working to see what caused the breakage to prevent further accidents.
Every year TIFF blows into town like a hail storm of high heels and canapes, and every year it leaves just as suddenly. The coveted People’s Choice Award was given out last night, the last night of Toronto’s most glamourous two weeks of the year, and the winner was The King’s Speech. The film stars Colin Firth and chronicles King George IV’s relationship with an Australian speech pathologist who helps him overcome a serious stutter. The Force of Nature: The David Suzuki Movie by Canadian filmmaker Sturla Gunnarsson also got a nod for People’s Choice Documentary. Our coverage of the awards ceremony is here.


  • http://undefined rek

    Now would be a good time for Rossi and Pants to drop out of the race. If they care at all for the future of the city, that is.

  • http://undefined mark.

    Maybe, but consider that Pantalone is only 4 points behind Smitherman. Also, Smitherman’s support hasn’t changed, while Rossi’s and Thomson’s has fallen.
    I honestly believe that if people thought about what their concerns are with the city (what’s really important to them, anger and ideology aside), they’d find that Pantalone would be their best representative. It’s also essential that the mayor (who’s a “weak mayor” in this system) needs to build consensus within council and Pantalone is probably the best guy to do this.

  • http://undefined Edmund

    I was wondering quite why Rossi is in the race. He’s got no chance of winning, has been elected to nothing, and his ideas are so out-there that he seems to be chasing away votes. But when I realized that the federal Liberals don’t have much time for Smitherman, it all came together: Rossi is a spoiler candidate to prevent Smitherman from winning.
    While Rossi may now believe he actually has a chance of winning, the real game is simply stopping Smitherman. Rossi’s efforts won’t be forgotten post-election, though. He’ll be parachuted into a nice safe federal seat somewhere.

  • http://undefined EricSmith

    While Rossi may now believe he actually has a chance of winning, the real game is simply stopping Smitherman.

    If the goal is to stop Smitherman, why are so many of Rossi’s silly ideas — his Big Dig and Hydro sell-off notions first among them — pitched at Ford’s level? Wouldn’t an anti-Smitherman plant more effectively duplicate Smitherman’s position?

  • http://undefined rek

    Well someone needs to drop out unless they want Ford in charge.
    If counsel won’t work with the mayor (and vice versa) we’re in for four years of what, exactly?

  • http://undefined Colin

    You can’t separate out ideology it effects each of the candidates as well as every voter. Looking at what concerns me (influenced by my own ideology) I find Pantalone and what he stands for (based on his ideology) to be the WORST option for mayor.

  • http://undefined Colin

    Really? Nobody would waste tens of thousands of hours of volunteers’ time, a million-plus dollars in cash, and risk getting their name tarnished just to be a spiteful spoiler.
    Oh, and if I recall correctly Rossi entered the race for mayor BEFORE Smitherman did.
    Someone has too much time on his hands if dreaming up crazy conspiracy theories are the best use of ones time.

  • http://undefined rek

    What’s the payout for the Liberals in a Ford-run Toronto? How do they benefit from Rossi being in a federal seat, but lose with Smitherman as mayor?

  • TheRealJohnson

    Rossi is in the race because Federal liberals want him to take votes from Smitherman? But Rossi isn’t aware of this? And in return he’ll be handed a federal seat?
    Why don’t feds want Smitherman as mayor? Why would they care? How could Rossi be part of a conspiracy he isn’t aware of? How do you guarantee a federal liberal seat? To a right of centre mayoral candidate?
    Comment…so…stupid…can’t…breath! Choking on rage!

  • http://undefined Vincent Clement

    Council doesn’t have to work with the Mayor. It takes a simple majority to implement programs and/or changes. On a good day that means 23 votes.
    The Mayor of Toronto has no special or additional powers other than those assigned to him by Council. And Council can always take away those powers.

  • http://undefined dowlingm

    I can think of one. “If you vote Hudak/Harper, Ford will get whatever he wants.”

  • http://undefined rek

    But we don’t vote Con, and only three of 22 ridings in the city went orange last time. If Ford wins and makes it nice for the inner ‘burbs, they might be encouraged to give the Cons a try, which is a loss for the Liberals.