Today, Toronto City Council has convened to decide on having a by-election or appointing someone to act as councillor in Ward 3 until the 2014 election.
For the first time in almost 4 years I have to agree with the Fords on the importance of having a by-election despite its $200,000+ cost estimate.
The importance of having a truly democratic process in place is fundamental. By appointing someone council will give them the unfair advantage of incumbency (the incumbent has both resources and status to quietly campaign prior to an election). If council is going to appoint they must appoint someone who would not run in that ward — but it’s virtually impossible to ensure this legally.
With over a year until the next election prior precedent has called for a by-election to ensure that the people get the representative they want.
Although I have offered to fill the seat, it is if, and only if, council decides to appoint someone. I would not seek re-election in the riding although I may seek it elsewhere and want to be very clear of this. I also want to emphasize that a by-election is the only truly democratic way to handle the issue of filling the seat in Ward 3. I encourage council to support a by-election there.