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Premier Doug Ford says it was “heartbreaking” to have to cancel his cellphone after the line was flooded by calls from special interest groups.

He says he didn’t want to scrap the line but had to do so after getting 400 to 500 calls a day, as well as harassing text messages.

Ford – who routinely handed out his number to the public – says one person texted him saying he hoped the premier would die of cancer like his brother, the late Toronto mayor Rob Ford.

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The premier discussed the decision to cancel the line during a call to a Toronto talk radio show today.

He says the special interest groups, who he did not name, have deprived Ontarians of direct access to him.

Opposition politicians have said Ford giving out his phone number was always a political stunt and never practical.

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