Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Toronto Mayor Lashes out at Critics, Avoids Mention of Alleged Crack Video

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Toronto Mayor Lashes out at Critics, Avoids Mention of Alleged Crack Video

Article excerpt

Toronto mayor lashes out at critics


TORONTO - Toronto's mayor was in fighting form Sunday, taking every opportunity to throw punches at his critics while making no direct mention on his weekly radio show of the drug use allegations that have been dogging him for days.

Rob Ford's appearance on Newstalk 1010 remained true to his strategy of curtailing comment on the scandal that has now plagued him for more than a fortnight ever since two publications reported on an alleged video that shows the mayor smoking what appears to be crack cocaine.

Rather than address the allegations and the consequent departure of several staffers from his office, Ford used his time on the airwaves to lash out at Ontario's governing Liberals, slam media outlets that have questioned his ability to govern and speak directly to Ford Nation, the name coined for his most ardent supporters.

"The support I'm getting is phenomenal," said Ford, who spent much of the show touting the progress he has made at city hall while reminding listeners he was definitely going to run in the next municipal election despite calls to resign.

"I'm just itching to go on the campaign trail. It's like a caged animal here. I want to put my record and let the people decide."

Ford has said he does not use crack cocaine and said he is not an addict of the drug. He has also said the alleged video does not exist.

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne has expressed concern about the "personal issues" that have garnered much attention at city hall in recent days and expressed hope that Toronto's city council can "get on with its business."

In discussing Wynne's governance, Ford told the premier to "straighten up" her act.

"She couldn't organize a two-car funeral and you're telling me to get my house in order? I've proven I can get my house in order, I've saved a billion dollars in two years Premier, " said Ford. …

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