Speed Reads

This just in

Rob Ford drops out of Toronto mayor's race to deal with health crisis

In a stunning development stemming from a new personal health crisis, Toronto Mayor Rob Ford has ended his campaign for a second term. And in another twist, his brother and political partner, City Councilor Doug Ford, is now seeking to run in his place.

Rob Ford isn't quite done with politics though, The Toronto Star reports. Instead, he will run again for his old seat on the city council, currently held by Doug, and for which their nephew Michael Ford was previously the candidate. Family representatives filed the necessary paperwork on Friday shortly before the 2 p.m. deadline.

Rob Ford was hospitalized on Wednesday with an abdominal tumor. Ford's doctors performed a biopsy on Thursday, though no diagnosis has yet been completed.

Rob Ford's mayoral term has put Toronto in the public eye all over the world, thanks to Ford's drug abuse, for which he recently returned from a stint in rehab, as well as other outlandish behavior.

Recent polls have consistently shown that Rob Ford was likely to lose re-election, with his support reduced only to his right-wing populist base. The most recent survey showed Ford trailing his main opponent John Tory, who is running as a centrist, 40 percent to 28 percent, with another 21 percent for Olivia Chow on the left. The election will be held on Oct. 27.

Update: Rob Ford has released an official statement. "While I'm unable to commit to the heavy schedule required for a mayoral candidate I will not turn my back on Ward 2. I will be running as Councillor of Ward 2, to represent the fine folks that have become my neighbours and friends over these past 14 years," Ford writes. He also explains: "I've asked Doug to finish what we started together, so that all we've accomplished isn't washed away."