Photo by Ayngelina Brogan/Torontoist.
Well, not really. It will live on in political grandstanding and pre-election speeches and in all manner of rhetorical asides for months to come. But, in real, day-to-day terms, it has come to a merciful end. By two 21–17 votes, after a day-long debate, City Council has just approved contracts with CUPE locals 79 and 416.
Today’s meeting opened with an impassioned Mayor Miller, voice quivering, thanking Torontonians for their “patience and support” and acknowledging the steady work of non-union staff who made the past few weeks bearable. This was followed in short order by several hours of public scrutiny as councillors combed over the details of the contracts, several more hours of private examination on matters that must remain confidential, and a final round of predictably testy speechifying.
The real political impacts of this debacle (and it is, for almost everyone involved, a debacle) are still unclear. Some have already pronounced Miller’s reign over, others think that there are still no viable opposition candidates and that he’ll weather the storm. The truth is simply that it’s too soon to tell. Sixteen months is a long time in politics, and for all that the election is soon, it isn’t soon enough for Miller’s opponents to have a lock.