As Halifax continues to debate how many Councillors the city needs for effective municipal government, a new study draws an …
A short walk down a long HallBy Laura Fader | Jul 6, 2012
Tags: Mayor, municipal election, politics, Vince Hall
Update: Shortly after this post went live, I heard from Vince Hall. The story now ends with an update based on my conversation with Hall. —Trevor J. Adams, editor
Before Wednesday morning, I knew virtually nothing of Vince Hall. But for this discussion, there are only three details necessary to summarize Hall’s political presence: he was a Cape Breton Regional Councillor, he is convicted twice of drunk driving and he wants to be elected Mayor of Halifax in October 2012.
Although an 11-year stint in office is fairly impressive, it would seem that Hall’s legal difficulties have tainted him somewhat. A candid article about Hall in the Herald yielded 18 reader comments—17 of which were negative and/or dripped sarcasm. This leads to the obvious question: running against a popular former MP, an ex-police officer and an entrepreneur (among others), where does Hall fit in?
So we asked. In a recent poll on our website, we asked people who they were going to vote for in October. And the results were unexpectedly overwhelming. Almost 80 per cent of respondents eagerly voted for Hall. Eagerly, indeed, as many of the votes were cast in the middle of the night or piled up on one another. And, upon closer inspection, almost 60 per cent were from the same three sources.
Twelve per cent of the votes are from the Cape Breton Regional Municipality. Seventeen percent of the votes cast are from an IWK Health Centre account, where Hall currently works as a children’s mental health and addictions counsellor. Finally, thirty per cent of the votes for Hall came from a single BlackBerry.
We were curious to ask Hall what he thought about these unusual voting patterns. Despite several requests over two days (and a direct message from Hall on Twitter where he agreed to be available for an interview), we couldn’t reach him for comment. Surely he’s a busy man: his Twitter account is frequently ablaze with campaigning notes and tiny anecdotes. Wednesday morning, for example, he tweeted that the Metro Transit system needs improvement and tweeted a photo of a long line of traffic—from a BlackBerry.
UPDATE: Shortly after this story went live, Hall contacted us to say that he had been available and awaiting our call. The number we finally reached him at is the same phone number we’ve called six times since Wednesday. Hall says he’s received various other calls at that number in the last 48 hours, so we’re all at a loss to explain why we’ve been unable to connect. Regarding the unusual poll results, Hall says he was as surprised as we were. “When you first announced your poll, I sent it around to my Facebook and Twitter friends,” he says. “Sometimes people get carried away with these things… What I take real issue with is the suggestion that I’ve been avoiding you. I’ve never avoided the media, because the media represents the public. You can call reporters in Cape Breton and they can tell you, even in my darkest days, they could always talk to me.”