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In a move that will make stand-up comics rejoice and the rest of the world sigh "Oh, Canada," Toronto Mayor Rob Ford made good on his threat to run for re-election and filed candidacy papers Thursday.
"My track record speaks for itself," Ford, 44, told reporters at the City Hall election office.
Ford was apparently referring to his fiscal conservatism and not some of his better known actions: admitting he smoked crack in a drunken stupor, using crude language to deny sexual harassment on live television, and knocking over a female councilwoman during a meeting where he was stripped of most powers.
He's also admitted to buying illegal drugs, drunken-driving and urinating in a parking lot.
In November, Toronto's city council approved a series of steps to curb Ford's influence, transferring a significant chunk of the mayor's budget and many of his powers to Deputy Mayor Norm Kelly.
As scandal has mounted, Ford has defiantly refused to step down and insisted he would make a bid for a second term, displaying the kind of political perseverance not seen since over-exposed ex-congressman Anthony Weiner tried to become mayor of New York last year.
And why not? Even as he became the butt of every late-night TV monologue, Ford's approval rating among Toronto voters was 42 percent — one notch higher than President Obama's rating.
Ford is raring to go. He was the first person to file papers for the Oct. 27 election. No one else has signed up yet.
His campaign slogan: "Ford more years."
Ford's campaign manager will be his brother, Doug Ford, who is not running for re-election as a member of the Toronto City Council. The two hosted a reality TV show last year that was canceled after one episode.
Rob Ford was rushing to Doug Ford's defense, in the mistaken belief he was in a fist-fight, when he barreled into a lawmaker during a Nov. 18 meeting and knocked her to the ground.
He apologized for the collision and his other misdeeds but did not offer any more mea culpas Thursday.
"Talk is cheap," he said.