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Rob Ford vs. John Tory: One year later

On the anniversary of Tory's mayoral win, how does he compare Ford?

With the one-year anniversary of John Tory being elected Toronto’s mayor, inevitably, comparisons between him and former leader Rob Ford are being made.

In 2014, Tory’s election centered on key issues such as the Gardiner Expressway, SmartTrack, and taxes. When Ford served his first year in office in 2010-2011, the agenda was quite different.

Tory built his campaign on city unification, upgrading transit and housing and ending the “circus” at city hall, while Ford wanted to improve the TTC and bring more transparency to city council.

With such differing agendas, the question remains: how do the two compare?

ROB FORD JOHN TORY
Famous slogans:
  • “Stop the gravy train”
  • “Ensuring your tax dollars are spent wisely”
  • “Livable, affordable and functional”
TTC:
  • Designated an essential service
  • Wanted to implement a Scarborough subway extension
  • Removed some streetcar routes Downtown
  • Established free transit for kids 12 and under
  • Hiked fares by 10 cents
  • Restored service to streetcar routes cut off under Ford’s administration
Garbage Collection:
  • Contracted out some of the city’s trash collection
  • Held off on contracting out rest of city’s garbage collection
Finances:
  • Revoked vehicle registration tax, abolished 5-cent bag tax
  • Planned to balance the books by borrowing money
Social Services:
  • 17.5% increase in waiting list for community housing
  • Established a 20-year poverty reduction strategy
Police:
  • Made a costly police deal that inspired some backlash from critics
  • Urged a ban on carding
  • Approved police budget of $1 billion, despite blaming high salaries

While each politician has garnered both fans and their critics, both Ford and Tory have also succeeded and failed in keeping campaign promises.

The key difference is that Tory, unlike Ford, still has time to prove himself. While it hasn’t been declared that Ford will face off against Tory again in 2018, there is some foreshadowing that Toronto will once again witness a historical mayoral election.