Hamilton Mayor Bob Bratina was referred to by embattled Toronto Mayor Rob Ford as “Mayor Britannia” during a media scrum this morning in Toronto.
Ford, a avid football fan, changed the topic of the scrum from his own problems to this weekend’s CFL Eastern Final between the Tiger-Cats and Argos.
“I want to call Mayor Britannia in Hamilton and tell him that we’re going to have to spank their little Tiger-Cats.”
Bratina, another avid CFL fan who was the stadium announcer – “the voice of the Ticats” – for many years, was at the new Hamilton football stadium on a tour of the facility when he received news of the comment.
I was standing beside the Mayor on what will be the 55-yard line as he looked at his Blackberry. I notice he appeared to be trying to understand whatever he was reading.
Bratina turned to CFL Board of Governors Chair Jim Lawson. Lawson asked Bratina what was occurring, Bratina responded:
‘Mayor Ford mentioned me in a press conference’. Bratina continued by saying the context of Ford comments was Sunday’s game, and that the person who emailed him wished him “luck” now that his name had been used by Ford.
Lawson and Bratina discussed the matter, I didn’t overhear the discussion. It ended with a laugh by both – some sort of joke having been made, and Bratina stated he was staying out of the Ford matter.
Official Comment from Bratina’s Office
The official comment from the Mayor’s office, as given by his Chief of Staff Peggy Chapman is they are not responding to Mayor Ford’s incorrect pronunciation of Bratina’s name.
On the bet for Sunday’s game, Chapman says Ford had not connected Bratina about friendly bet. Chapman says the Eastern Final is different from the Labour Day Classic or Grey Cup and that Bratina would not be betting on the game regardless of Ford’s current embattled situation.
Not Speaking on Ford Situation
Mayor Bratina has carefully avoided any comment or reference to Mayor Ford’s behaviour as the Toronto scandal has grown.
No other Mayor’s have commented on the Ford situation either.
Bratina carried on his day as planned with a trip to the Boys and Girls Clubs of Hamilton after the stadium where he participated in a major private sector funding announcement.