Let’s set the Trudeau comment aside as partisan cheerleading, positivity and wishful thinking. Rae’s decision to avoid Toronto City Hall like the plague really has our attention.
In announcing his resignation as Liberal MP on Wednesday, the former interim party leader took a brief moment to address the speculation that excitedly grew ahead of the pronouncement.
No way was he going to run in Toronto's next municipal election.
“I have a marriage and some conditions have been established. I will not be a candidate for Mayor of Toronto,” Rae said during his televised press conference.
[ Political Points: Liberal Bob Rae to resign from House of Commons ]
So ended about 45 minutes of hyper-partisan enthusiasm that played out on social media.
Rae, the popular MP for Toronto Centre and the former NDP premier of Ontario, would be a popular mayoral candidate for many who oppose current and embattled Mayor Rob Ford.
Of course, Rae has his fair share of detractors in the city as well, following a stint as Ontario premier which left the NDP at an all all-time low level of support.
A Forum Research poll conducted in April suggested Rae would beat Ford in a head-to-head race. That survey was taken ahead of the ongoing scandal surrounding crack video allegations.
Mr @bobraeMP to step down as MP. News conference at 11. Is that a ray of hope for my "Draft Bob Rae for Toronto Mayor Campaign" I see?
— Tabatha Southey (@TabathaSouthey) June 19, 2013
Congratulations to Bob Rae on a successful tenure as MP for Toronto-Centre. Mayoral race featuring Ford v Chow v Rae in the future? — Pat Thomson (@patthomson19) June 19, 2013
Everyone knows that @bobraeMP has to resign as MP to focus on his Toronto mayoral campaign, duh.
— Steve Murray (@NPsteve) June 19, 2013
[ More Brew: Montreal’s next interim mayor had better be squeaky clean ]
Bob Rae really would be on crack if wanted to be mayor of Toronto. — Jim Armour (@ArmourJim) June 19, 2013
Toronto mayoral run? RT Bob Rae is set to resign at 11AM, and will make his intentions known then
— Jeremy Grimaldi (@Journo_Jez) June 19, 2013
Instead, Rae will continue his work as a lawyer and mediator, and remain "someone who gets involved in conflict resolution, both in Canada and elsewhere."
Toronto's municipal election is scheduled for October 2014 and Ford is already in campaign mode.
NDP MP Olivia Chow has also made allusions that she was considering a run. The same poll that suggested Rae would beat Ford also suggested Chow would be a threat to Ford's re-election plans.
His brother, Coun. Doug Ford, has dismissed Chow as "no Jack Layton" - an allusion to her deceased husband, the former NDP leader who passed away in 2011.