As Mayor Rob Ford put it “the writing was on the wall”.
In what appears to have been a pre-emptive strike, city councillor Paul Ainslie has quit the mayor’s Executive Committee, resigning as Chair of the Parks and Environment Committee. Ainslie’s resignation was announced during Friday’s city council meeting.
Earlier in the week the Scarborough-East councillor went against the mayor by voting for an LRT (Light Rail Transit) in Scarborough rather than the subway that Ford has been pushing for. City council did vote for a Scarborough subway, but Ainslie’s stance caught the mayor off guard and lead to a fiery exchange during the debate.
“I want to thank Councillor Ainslie for serving on the executive. I think the whole world sort of saw what was going to happen today. I don’t like asking anyone to leave my executive but I want to thank Paul for his work. He resigned from Parks and Rec today so thank you very much. It’s a lot better way of doing things that way so he just gave me a letter.”said Mayor Rob Ford at Friday’s council meeting.
Catching up with Councillor Paul Ainslie during the lunch break he told Newstalk 1010 there’s no love lost between he and the mayor.
“I’m here to represent the residents of my ward and the City of Toronto and if I have an opinion on, you know, an LRT for example versus subway, I don’t expect to be bullied or told ‘this is how you vote’. I’m a municipal councillor I don’t belong to a political party. I’m not in a cabinet. And, you know, if I wanted that type of whipping to take place I would have gone and ran provincially or federally.” said Ainslie.
Councillor Ainslie accuses the mayor’s staff of bullying and says Mayor Rob Ford doesn’t have a strategic plan for the city. Ainslie says he will not be supporting Rob Ford’s bid for re-election in 2014.
“I’ll look for another mayoralty candidate next year that I think can lead the city in a better strategic direction and go from there.” said Ainslie.