Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

National and World

May 1, 2014

Toronto mayor to take leave after new video report

TORONTO — Toronto Mayor Rob Ford will take an immediate leave of absence to seek help for alcohol, he said, as a report surfaced about a second video of the mayor smoking what appears to be crack cocaine.

Ford also said he would take a leave from his campaign for re-election. One of his rivals in the Oct. 27 election called on the mayor to resign.

“I have a problem with alcohol, and the choices I have made while under the influence. I have struggled with this for some time,” Ford said in statement late Wednesday.

“I have tried to deal with these issues by myself over the past year. I know that I need professional help and I am now 100% committed to getting myself right,” he said.

The Globe and Mail newspaper said it has viewed a second video of Ford smoking what appears to be crack cocaine in his sister’s basement. The national newspaper said two Globe reporters viewed the video from a self-professed drug dealer showing Ford taking a drag from a pipe early Saturday morning.

The video is part “of a package of three videos the dealer said was surreptitiously filmed around 1:15 a.m., and which he says he is now selling for ‘at least six figures,”’ the paper reported.

Ford did not address the reported video or make any reference to crack cocaine in his statement.

The mayor was seen leaving his west-end Toronto home Thursday morning in a two-vehicle convoy but did not respond to reporters’ questions or say where he was going.

News reports of the existence of an earlier video of Ford apparently smoking crack first surfaced last May, igniting a media firestorm. The mayor denied the existence of that video for months but after police said last year they had obtained it, Ford acknowledged that he smoked crack in a “drunken stupor.” He rebuffed intense pressure to resign and launched his re-election bid earlier this year. The first video has never been released to the public.

Ford’s lawyer, Dennis Morris, said he spoke to Ford Wednesday and said the mayor has accepted that he has a problem.

“He acknowledges he has a substance abuse problem and he wants to do something about it,” Morris told The Associated Press.

Ford has careened from one scandal to another, becoming a national embarrassment for many Canadians. A string of incidents includes public drunkenness and an appearance in another video that showed him threatening “murder” in an incoherent rant. Toronto’s city council has stripped him of most of his powers.

Also on Wednesday, The Toronto Sun said that it had obtained an audio recording of Ford making offensive remarks about other politicians at a bar on Monday night.

Ford said last year that he quit drinking alcohol after having a “come to Jesus moment” but later acknowledged that he drank again.  A number of recordings of the mayor intoxicated have surfaced since.

Ford acknowledged “rocky moments over the past year” during his official campaign launch earlier this month but vowed to fight harder than ever to win re-election.

Ford, who was the first to register as a candidate in January, invoked the spirit of second chances during a speech in front of supporters.

In in his statement Wednesday, he asked for continued support. “I love the people of Toronto, I love being your mayor and I hope you will continue to stand by me,” he said.

A message left with Ford’s chief of staff was not returned.  Ford’s lawyer, Morris, did not immediately respond to a call seeking comment on the reports that emerged Wednesday night.

John Tory, who is running against Ford in the election, said he is relieved that Ford is seeking help but that the mayor should resign.

“Like Torontonians across the city, I am deeply disappointed by these revelations of Mayor Ford’s behavior,” Tory said. “For the good of the city, I call on Mayor Ford to resign.”

The premier of Ontario province, Kathleen Wynne, who was out for a Thursday morning jog, said the situation with Ford has been a distraction for a long time. She said she has long worked directly with Toronto Deputy Mayor Norm Kelly.

“Rob Ford needs to deal with his personal issues,” she said. “I have been and will continue to deal with deputy mayor Kelly.”

Late night comedian Jimmy Kimmel, who has repeatedly poked fun at Ford and hosted him on his show, tweeted that he was concerned about Ford. “All jokes aside, I hope(at)TOMayorFord  really does get the help he obviously needs,” Kimmel tweeted.

1
Text Only
National and World
  • House GOP weighs tough new immigration bills

    August 1, 2014

  • Poll: Foreign policy no longer Obama strong point

    August 1, 2014

  • US employers add 209K jobs, rate rises to 6.2 pct.

    August 1, 2014

  • Thousands rally for coal

    The echo of people chanting, “Hey, hey, EPA, don’t take our jobs away” could be heard in downtown Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on Thursday.
    The voices came from about 5,000 United Mine Workers of America (UMW) members and their families along with other unions such as the Boilermakers Union and the Brotherhood of Electrical Workers International (IBEW) marching through the streets.

    August 1, 2014

  • West Africa Ebola outbreak tops 700 deaths

    Security forces went house-to-house in Sierra Leone’s capital Thursday looking for Ebola patients and others exposed to the disease as the death toll from the worst recorded outbreak in history surpassed 700 in West Africa.
    U.S. health officials urged Americans not to travel to the three countries hit by the medical crisis:  Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia.

    July 31, 2014

  • Sunburn isn't the only sign of summer that can leave you itchy and blistered

    You've got a rash. You quickly rule out the usual suspects: You haven't been gardening or hiking or even picnicking, so it's probably not a plant irritant such as poison ivy or wild parsnip; likewise, it's probably not chiggers or ticks carrying Lyme disease; and you haven't been swimming in a pond, which can harbor the parasite that causes swimmer's itch.

    July 31, 2014

  • The virtues of lying

    Two computational scientists set out recently to simulate the effects of lying in a virtual human population. Their results, published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B, show that lying is essential for the growth of a cohesive social network.

    July 31, 2014

  • lockport-police.jpg Police department turns to Facebook for guidance on use of 'negro'

    What seems to be a data entry mistake by a small town police department in western New York has turned into a social media firestorm centered around the word "negro" and whether it's acceptable to use in modern society.

    July 31, 2014 3 Photos

  • Screen Shot 2014-07-31 at 2.12.55 PM.png VIDEO: Five-year-old doesn't want her brother to grow up

    Sadie, an adorable 5-year-old from Phoenix, wants her brother to stay young forever, so much so that her emotional reaction to the thought of him getting older has drawn more than 10 million views on YouTube.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Comiskey.jpg Sterling not the only bad owner

    As the Donald Sterling era in with the Los Angeles Clippers looks to be winding down, many are calling him the worst owner in sports history. From being cheap with the players to his most recent racist comments, it's hard to argue against.
    Yet, there are a few owners of athletic teams who can give Sterling a run for title of worst in history.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

Local News
AP Video
Escaping Email: Inspired Vision or Pipe Dream? Obama Calls on Hamas to Release Israeli Soldier Hispanic Caucus Slams GOP for Border Bill Shifts Obama: GOP Not Even Trying to Solve Immigration Emory Prepares to Treat American Ebola Cases US Employers Add 209K Jobs, Rate 6.2 Pct House GOP Optimistic About New Border Bill Four Rescued From Crashed Plane Clinton Before 9-11: Could Have Killed Bin Laden Couple Channel Grief Into Soldiers' Retreat WWI Aviation Still Alive at Aerodrome in NY Raw: Woman Who Faced Death Over Faith in N.H. Russell Simmons, LL Cool J Visit Youth at Jail Raw: Obama Gets Hug From Special Olympian US, UN Announce Deal on Gaza Cease-Fire Despite Moratorium, Detroit Water Worries Remain Faith Leaders Arrested at DC Deportation Protest Family Dispute Cripples Northeast Grocery Chain CDC Warns Travelers Amid Ebola Outbreak US Stocks Plunge, Wiping Out July's Gains
Sister Newspapers' News