Judge Charles Hackland has offered some clarification of an ambiguous point in his ruling.
If Rob Ford loses his seat as mayor and city council decides to hold a mid-term election to replace him, Ford himself can run.
Because of an ambiguity in the ruling by Judge Charles Hackland that booted Ford from office on Monday, this had been a matter of dispute. The ruling says that the judge declines “to impose any further disqualification from holding office beyond the current term” (emphasis ours), which had been interpreted in two different ways. Some, like the City’s own legal counsel, thought Hackland was trying to say that Ford couldn’t run again before the next scheduled municipal election, in 2014. Others thought Hackland was saying that Ford could run again at any time, meaning he could potentially participate in a by-election held before 2014. It turns out the latter was the correct interpretation.
Hackland himself clarified his meaning in a conference call with lawyers from both sides this morning, the Star reports.
There won’t necessarily be a by-election, though. Even if Ford loses his appeal and is deposed, council can opt to appoint an unelected interim mayor.
Confused? Here’s a flow chart that summarizes it all.