Friday, October 3, 2014
'I understand the numbers': Doug Ford stands by pledge to reduce land-transfer tax for Toronto
In a tense interview with CBC Metro Morning on Friday, Ford stood by his campaign promise to start to cut the land transfer tax by 15% next year if he wins the election. The Etobicoke North (Ward 2) councillor also defended missing 53% of votes in his last year at council and denied the accusation that he’s a bully.
Metro Morning host Matt Galloway asked Ford about Friday’s Toronto Sun editorial that questioned his land-transfer tax proposal and stated: “We don’t see how the numbers are going to add up.”
Galloway asked Ford how he is going to make the more than $50-million revenue reduction work.
“I’m not going to cut anything,” Ford said. “I don’t listen to the armchair quarterbacks, the media, yourself, the Toronto Sun.
“I sat on the budget (committee) - I understand the numbers, you guys have never seen the numbers.”
Mayor Rob Ford’s tough-talking brother dismissed studies from the University of Toronto about the city’s budget.
“They can twist the numbers,” Ford said. “They haven’t been down there, they don’t understand it.”
Asked about missing more than half the votes at council in 2014, Ford accused Galloway of being “disingenuous.”
“I worked 18 hours a day, I never missed a council meeting,” Ford said. “I’ve never missed a council meeting in four years to the exception of one meeting in four years.
“Did I miss a few votes about maybe a stop sign or about lunch, extending a lunch, or extending a speaking time? Yeah. You know something, I was in the chamber, all the councillors saw me in the chamber.”
Then Ford went on to suggest he was out “lobbying votes” when he missed votes.
“You don’t just sit in your chair at council when they pontificate over nothing for six hours about a stop sign,” Ford said.
Galloway went on to bring up Ford’s “divisive” behaviour at council.
“You just don’t understand because you aren’t there,” Ford said.
“It’s politics, it’s City Hall, you don’t sit there and sing Kumbaya. It’s not a church picnic, Matt. You have to stand up for what you believe in, you don’t waffle.”
Asked directly if he thinks he’s a bully, Ford said no.
“And everyone knows that down there. Absolutely not,” Ford said. “If it means being called a bully to stand up for my brother and stand up for the taxpayers.”
Ford did manage to get in several shots at his main mayoral rival John Tory.
“I can hit the ground running,” Ford said at one point. “He doesn’t understand City Hall.”
He also continued to slam Tory’s SmartTrack plan.
“It’s pie-in-the-sky this idea that he has,” Ford said.
Throughout the interview, Ford tried to stay on his campaign messages.
“This city is booming, everyone knows it,” Ford said.
That prompted Galloway to ask: “Why do you take credit for what your brother did?”
“Because I was beside him,” Ford said. “I was working day in and day out.”
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