Toronto mayor Rob Ford reversed months of denials today when he told reporters at the Toronto City Hall that he did, in fact, smoke crack cocaine, but he denied being an addict.
“But, no — do I? Am I an addict, no? Have I tried it? Um, probably in one of my drunken stupors, probably approximately about a year ago,” Ford told the stunned reporters, CBC News reported
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Ford had been asked for some time about substance abuse issues, and last week’s revelation from the Toronto police that they have a tape that shows him inhaling from a crack pipe ramped up the controversy. Ford had vehemently denied smoking crack.
Ford’s admission Tuesday immediately generated calls for his resignation, CBC News said, including Councillor Jaye Robinson who said he should take a leave from work and that he doesn’t have “a shred of credibility.”
“The real issue is getting the mayor to address his health issues, step aside [and] take a leave of absence, as I’ve been saying for six long months,” Robinson told CBC. “And now he’s coming forward and he’s admitting that there is clearly a problem here.”
Ford reiterated to the Toronto Sun that he would not be forced out of his position.
“I feel like I got 1,000 pounds off my back. I felt I had to say it. It is what it is. I feel two inches high right now but I needed to deal with it. I am not going to quit or take leave,” Ford told the Sun. “I am not an addict or an alcoholic. I have work to do and I am moving on. The way I see it now, this is over.”
Ford told the Sun that he believes he knows what is on the video Toronto police have, calling it “not pretty.”
“Did I smoke something? Probably. It’s ugly,” he told the Sun.
A Toronto Sun poll found 60 percent of people believe Ford should resign.
But despite that, his approval rating was still about 43 percent, which is what it was when people were polled after the revelation that police had a video showing him smoking crack.
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