A ploy named sue: Lawsuits over lawsuits over lawsuits

This story of lawsuits over lawsuits over lawsuits gets complicated fast. Let’s start with Daniel Dale at the Toronto Star:

Deputy mayor Doug Holyday personally sued the city to challenge a controversial 2008 council decision to use taxpayer money to cover two councillors’ campaign-related legal fees. He said he was willing to take a financial hit to stand up for an important principle.

He won. But now, more than a year after he filed the lawsuit, he is asking council to use taxpayer money to cover most of his own legal fees.

via Holyday wants city aid to pay for lawsuit against city – thestar.com.

Here’s what I can gather: Current councillor Giorgio Mammoliti and former councillor Adrian Heaps successfully defended themselves against allegations related to their campaigns following the 2006 election. (Heaps was actually sued for libel by Michelle Berardinetti, who went on to defeat him in the 2010 election.) City Council, ignoring the advice of the City Solicitor, voted to pay for these legal costs. Doug Holyday got mad about this and brought his own lawsuit against the city, alleging that it was improper for the city to pay for legal costs related to things that happened when Heaps and Mammoliti were acting as candidates, not councillors. He won.

Now Holyday is asking that the city reimburse him for his legal bills. The bills he racked up suing the city over his belief that they had wrongly paid legal bills.

It gets weirder: The Toronto Party, a weird right-wing organization that ran a slate of candidates in the fall (none of whom did very well), in response to Holyday’s request, is now threatening to sue the city if they pay Holyday’s legal bills.

The Toronto Party, which has used its website as a platform to rail against this kind of thing repeatedly, also released a newsletter in February asking for donations to cover its own legal costs. (Left column.) So you can help pay their legal bills, if you want to contribute to this twisted Hall of Mirrors.

In short: a political organization is threatening to sue a councillor if he persuades the city to reimburse him for money he spent suing the city over their reimbursement of legal expenses for councillors. Someone should probably diagram all of this.

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