The pessimist in me has accepted that the video will never come out and that Rob Ford isn’t going anywhere. So, my thoughts naturally turn to the next election; who will run against the incumbent and how Toronto’s political organizers are starting the process of assembling a campaign to take on Rob Ford. I’m thinking I want to see more media coverage that looks past Crackgate (which has spurred some of the best journalism in recent years) and to the next election. And I figure I can’t be alone.

I was talking to a friend about this on Sunday; we were discussing how easy it would be to split the progressive vote among several candidates and therefore allow Ford to win again. We figured many Torontonians are looking past the crack video story and hoping – since Ford isn’t giving up office and has left no doubt he will run again – that some media will start to focus on the next election and particularly the effort to unseat Ford, with his seemingly large and unmovable support. The next election is in 16 months — not a ton of time, politically-speaking.

I’m interested in hearing about the conversation in political circles on whether the imperative to pick one progressive candidate to run against Ford will trump the individual ambition of a handful of potential candidates. I’m equally interested in learning about any efforts to mobilize the enormous potential anti-Ford vote. Who is looking to get out new voters? Who is looking to organize the young, the cyclists, the hipsters, the downtown condo dwellers, the anti-crack voters, the ashamed, the embarrassed and even the cynics?

Yes, much of this discussion is taking place behind closed doors. But, has there ever been a situation like this? And given that the business of the city has slowed down somewhat, what better time to turn our attention to what would be possible without a hamstrung mayor?

So I’m hoping to soon see more stories that look past the current issues and toward the next election.

Because as a voter and news consumer, this is what I want to know.

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