Toronto Mayor Rob Ford's alleged crack smoking scandal doesn't appear to be going anywhere anytime soon, which may point to why he released a statement denying the claims Friday (May 24). Ford asserts that he's not addicted to crack coke, nor does he smoke the drug.
A drug dealer reportedly shopped a video around of Ford getting high, and tried to sell the recording to the Toronto Star, and Gawker.com. So far the footage has not been released. "I do not use crack c0caine, nor am I an addict of crack c0caine," the politician said in front the media, but took no questions.
Ford's crack scandal may already be taking a toll on his day job. He fired Chief of Staff Mark Towhey yesterday without giving an explanation. Towhey was escorted out of City Hall by security only revealing that he was pink slipped versus stepping down from his post.
As he said when news of the report first broke, Ford believes that he's just being picked on by the press. "It is most unfortunate, very unfortunate, that my colleagues and the great people of this city have been exposed to the fact that I've been judged by the media without any evidence."
His excuse hasn't killed the skepticism.
"I don't believe the mayor," City Councillor Glenn De Baeremaeker said. "He should resign and then go seek help."
Revealing the erratic behavior he's seen Ford display, Baeremaeker believes the mayor is "imploding," and needs to face facts. "The mayor had an opportunity to acknowledge that perhaps he does have a problem, and to take a leave of absence, perhaps to take care of himself and his family, instead he went on the attack."
Ford has a history of acting inappropriately, and has made news for it since being elected in 2010. He was fired from his high school football coaching job Wednesday (May 22), earlier in the year the 43-year-old was asked to leave a gala because he was said to be drunk, and during his campaign bid, he refuted claims of a 1999 kush-related DUI arrest.
To help fully expose Ford, Gawker.com has turned to the public to raise money and purchase the tape. The site is looking to get $200,000 from donations to buy the video which it will publish. They've raised $90,000 so far.