All Mayor Rob Ford had to do was apologize to avoid $6 million lawsuit
Sorry seems to be the hardest word for Rob Ford, and he is already paying the price for it, whatever the outcome of the lawsuit.
Ford was back in court this week for questioning in the $6 million libel suit brought against him by George Foulidis, the owner of Tuggs Inc., over a Toronto Sun story in which the mayor said he suspected corruption in a contract awarded his firm by the city.
Tuggs operates a restaurant and food concessions along the eastern beaches, and was given an untendered, 20-year renewal of its contract with the city, which Ford described to the Sun during his 2010 election campaign as corrupt, even though he had no proof.
Foulidis challenged him to prove it or apologize.
Ford, refused, prompting Foulidis to launch the libel suit that is now playing out in court.
Nobody can accuse Ford of not sticking to his guns, even when staring down the barrel of a bigger weapon.
He has zero climb-down in him. If anything, he tends to climb higher up the tree, even when those who try to help him are begging, oh please, Mr. Mayor, come down from there, right now.
Some smart people must have told him there would be no harm in apologizing to Foulidis and making it clear that he was speaking about in-camera decisions made by city council about the deal, rather than impugning Tuggs and Foulidis.
He said as much in court on Friday, but at the end of a pointy stick poked at him by Foulidis’ lawyer.
It’s not much different than the legal action brought against him over his refusal to give back about $3,000 in donations to his football foundation that were improperly solicited.
He was in court on that beef in September, and could be removed from office over it.
All he had to do to avoid that pickle was give back the money, but no.
And all he had to avoid Foulidis’ libel claim was apologize, but no.
We've all had to say we are sorry about something or other. I do it all the time, and so do most other people.
But not Ford. It's just not in him to give.
It is the same stubbornness that emboldens councillors in the mushy middle to thwart him at city council, when he needs their help.
With the various legal actions, negative press and lack of co-operation from council, it must seem to Ford as if everyone is out to get him.
But who's to blame?