Toronto city council strips Rob Ford of his powers as mayor…but he refuses to go quietly

 

Rob Ford’s chaotic and seemingly desperate attempt to remain in office appeared one step closer to its inevitable conclusion last night after he was stripped of most of his remaining powers.

Toronto city council voted 36-5 to curb the embattled Mayor’s grip on power and reduce his budget by more than half for the remainder of his term. Ford called the effort a "coup d'etat" and challenged the council to call snap elections.

"What's happening here today is not a democratic process, this is a dictatorship," he told city councillors in a heated, and often surreal meeting, that stretched for five hours and saw Mr Ford compare the action to the invasion of Kuwait by Saddam Hussein. "You are absolutely telling everybody that voted in the last municipal election that their vote does not count."

Mr Ford, who has been under pressure in an increasingly bizarre series of appearances since a video of him smoking crack cocaine surfaced in May this year, refused to apologise. "I've admitted my mistakes," he said. "I'm not going to sit here and go on and on and on”.

At one point debate Ford paced around the council chamber and traded exchanges with members of the public. In scenes likened more to a wrestling match, members of the public chanted "Shame! Shame!" at the mayor. Ford responded by, at one point, running through the gallery and almost knocking over a woman councillor.

Under the motion, already endorsed by a majority of council members, Ford would have his office budget cut by 60 per cent and his mayoral staff would be allowed to join the deputy mayor. Ford would effectively have no legislative power as he would no longer chair the executive committee.

The motion was revised from a tougher version to ward off potential legal challenges. Ford would retain his title and ability to represent Toronto at official functions. The city's lawyer said the proposal does not render Ford "mayor in name only."

The council does not have the power to remove Ford from office, barring a criminal conviction. It is pursuing the strongest recourse available after recent revelations that Ford smoked crack cocaine and his repeated outbursts of erratic behaviour.

"Mayor Ford has had many choices ... would he change his behaviour? Would he step aside and seek help? ...The mayor unfortunately has chosen the path of denial," Councillors John Filion said.

"Now it's time to take away the keys. ... The new allegations pile up faster than the old ones can be dealt with. If many Torontonians were initially fascinated by the drama, they are now fed up with it. They want it to end."

Far from being chastened, however, Ford has vowed to take the council to court and insists he will seek re-election next year.

News
people Emma Watson addresses celebrity nude photo leak
News
Katie Hopkins appearing on 'This Morning' after she purposefully put on 4 stone.
peopleKatie Hopkins breaks down in tears over weight gain challenge
News
Boris Johnson may be manoeuvring to succeed David Cameron
i100
News
peopleHis band Survivor was due to resume touring this month
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
News
people'It can last and it's terrifying'
News
In this photo illustration a school student eats a hamburger as part of his lunch which was brought from a fast food shop near his school, on October 5, 2005 in London, England. The British government has announced plans to remove junk food from school lunches. From September 2006, food that is high in fat, sugar or salt will be banned from meals and removed from vending machines in schools across England. The move comes in response to a campaign by celebrity TV chef Jamie Oliver to improve school meals.
science
Arts and Entertainment
tv
Life and Style
fashionModel of the moment shoots for first time with catwalk veteran
Life and Style
fashionPart of 'best-selling' Demeter scent range
News
i100
Sport
Tom Cleverley
footballLoan move comes 17 hours after close of transfer window
Sport
Alexis Sanchez, Radamel Falcao, Diego Costa and Mario Balotelli
footballRadamel Falcao and Diego Costa head record £835m influx
Life and Style
fashionAngelina Jolie's wedding dressed revealed
News
i100
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Science Teacher Urgently required for October start

£6720 - £33600 per annum: Randstad Education Nottingham: We are currently recr...

ICT Teacher

£120 - £130 per day: Randstad Education Group: We are looking for an outstandi...

Art & Design Teacher

£120 - £130 per day: Randstad Education Group: We are looking for an outstandi...

Assistant Management Accountant -S/West London - £30k - £35k

£30000 - £35000 per annum: Ashdown Group: We are working with an exciting orga...

Day In a Page

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

James Frey's literary treasure hunt

Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering