David Frum

05.17.13

Is This Toronto Mayor Rob Ford's Newest Substance Abuse Scandal?

Video screenshot

A couple of disclaimers here. The Toronto Star is a paper notoriously hostile to Toronto Mayor Rob Ford. The video in question comes from unreliable sources. Etcetera and etcetera. Caveat lector.

Now to the shocker:

A cellphone video that appears to show Mayor Rob Ford smoking crack cocaine is being shopped around Toronto by a group of Somali men involved in the drug trade.

Two Toronto Star reporters have viewed the video three times. It appears to show Ford in a room, sitting in a chair, wearing a white shirt, top buttons open, inhaling from what appears to be a glass crack pipe. Ford is incoherent, trading jibes with an off-camera speaker who goads the clearly impaired mayor by raising topics including Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau and the Don Bosco high school football team Ford coaches.

“I’m f---ing right-wing,” Ford appears to mutter at one point. “Everyone expects me to be right-wing. I’m just supposed to be this great.…” and his voice trails off. At another point he is heard calling Trudeau a “fag.” Later in the 90-second video he is asked about the football team and he appears to say (though he is mumbling), “they are just f---ing minorities.”

The Star had no way to verify the authenticity of the video, which appears to clearly show Ford in a well-lit room.