Toronto Mayor Calls Police After Being Ambushed by CBC TV Crew
TORONTO - As if performing a farce by remaining perfectly serious, Toronto mayor Rob Ford rang the police Monday after being confronted by actress Mary Walsh and and a cameraman from the Canadian Broadcasting Corp.’s satirical news show This Hour Has 22 Minutes.
“I came out of my house and I was ambushed,” Ford told reporters after Walsh, garishly dressed as intrepid journalist Marg Delahunty, unexpectedly showed up at the edge of the mayor’s driveway, with a microphone in hand.
“There was a lady dressed up and she was screaming my name: 'We got you Rob Ford, we got you,'" Ford, the poster boy for Canada's Tea Party movement, recounted.
The mayor, accompanied by his five-year child, who he said was frightened by the incident, returned to his house and made a 911 call to the police.
“When you come to my private house early in the morning and ambush me, I think that crosses the line,” Ford added, with a remark that rang with Canadians questioning Tuesday why the CBC crew chose to confront the mayor at his home.
CBC spokesman Chris Ball told the CBC.ca website that the This Hour Has 22 Minutes crew attempted to ambush Ford outside his home to shoot a segment for a future show.
"These surprise interviews are what 22 Minutes are known for and have been a part of the show for years. The interview began at the end of his driveway and concluded shortly thereafter. The crew had no interaction with the Toronto police,” Ball said.
Most Canadian politicians, including former Ontario premier Mike Harris and former Canadian prime minister Jean Chrétien, take their confrontations with the Marg Delahunty character in their stride, and mostly smile broadly as Walsh delivers her comic lines in front of a TV camera.
Walsh also famously ambushed former Alaska governor Sarah Palin during a U.S. book tour.
But Ford served notice to Canadian satirical news shows not to doorstep him again, or else.
“Don’t come to my house. I just hope someone else doesn’t do that again because I just don’t want anything else serious to happen,” he told reporters.