Friday, November 5, 2010

Did Ford's campaign use dirty tricks to keep John Tory out of the race?

You may recall that John Tory was originally considered a front runner for the Toronto mayoral race, until he declared that he wasn't going to run and thus handed the race to Rob Ford. So it's rather interesting to see a report that one of Ford's top campaign staff went to great lengths to keep Tory from running:

The Rob Ford campaign had one of its members anonymously call John Tory’s radio show and bait him about his integrity in a strategy to keep Tory out of Toronto’s mayoral race.

Nick Kouvalis, Ford’s deputy campaign manager and now the mayor-elect’s chief of staff, told a forum Friday that his success in keeping Tory out of the race was a “huge victory” and “Rob won because of it.”

And now that Ford is elected, he added, the transition team is talking to Tory, the Newstalk 1010 host and chair of the Toronto Summit City Alliance, about playing a possible role in the Ford administration.

Kouvalis disclosed the election tactics less than a week after admitting the Ford campaign set up a fake Twitter account for “queensquaykaren” (aka Karen Philby) — a supposed Smitherman supporter, complete with photo and profile — to covertly obtain a recording of a potentially damaging phone conversation between Ford and an OxyContin drug user.

From the Star (h/t pogge). And are Ford's people trying to deny this? No, just denying that there's anything wrong with doing that:
Kouvalis denied the anonymous call and fake Twitter account were “dirty tricks,” portraying them as a normal part of campaigns done by all sides.
Hmm. Deception is a normal part of campaigning? I guess...

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