In Brief

Rob Ford: disgraced Toronto mayor wants 'Ford more years'

He smoked crack in a 'drunken stupor', but Ford is confident his 'record' will see him re-elected

 ROB FORD made an uncharacteristically early start today. He arrived at Toronto's City Hall at 8.30am to file the papers required to allow him to seek re-election as mayor.

 The controversial figure, who has admitted smoking crack cocaine during a "drunken stupor", was the first person to declare his candidacy for mayor. CBC News points out that today is the first day candidates can file nomination papers with the city clerk's office for the 27 October poll.

 "My track record speaks for itself," Ford said as he filed his papers. "I can't wait to get my record on the floor so people can decide for themselves."

 The 44-year-old already has a slogan for his shot at a second term as mayor: "Ford more years". He dismissed questions from reporters about his drug use and other scandals as "personal", the Globe and Mail reports.

 Can Ford possibly retain his job? Surprisingly, perhaps, the answer doesn't seem to be a resounding 'no'.  The Globe and Mail reports that opinion polls have found that Ford "still has a sizeable support base" despite his misdemeanours and indiscretions.

 After Ford filed his papers this morning, a further five people declared their candidacy for the top job. They include Karen Stintz, the chair of the Toronto Transit Commission and David Soknacki, a former city councillor. Political analysts say Ford's chances of re-election are likely to improve as the number of his opponents rises. A large field will split the anti-Ford vote.

 The Independent points out that Ford has ten months to "clean up his act". That may be enough for a man who has proved "difficult to dislodge".

 Although many of his powers and much of his budget were transferred to deputy mayor Norm Kelly in November, Ford has "clung to power", says the Globe and Mail. In recent days, he has given daily updates on the ice storm that has battered Toronto despite the fact he is no longer part of the city's emergency committee.

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