How this era of no-scrum journalism has made Doug Ford one lucky premier - 2020-08-10
Let's stipulate right off the top that Premier Doug Ford has surprised millions of Ontarians by rising to the occasion and responding to the COVID-19 pandemic in ways many thought unimaginable.
Compared to other jurisdictions in North America, Ontario's recent success rate of fewer than 100 new cases a day is deeply impressive.
However, let's in the same breath acknowledge that, as much as Ford has defied expectations, he's also gotten incredibly lucky when it comes to his relations with the media. It's not trite to say that media coverage of any government is one of the single most important ways that the public judges whether a party deserves re-election. During Ford's first year, the coverage was often critical because (as his former campaign war-room strategist Melissa Lantsman put it) the premier was a bull who brought his own china shop with him wherever he went. He and his team governed like amateurs, seemingly looking for disruption and political enemies at every turn, just for the fun of it.