Toronto Mayor Rob Ford Suspends Campaign to Seek Help After New Bender Tapes Emerge

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
April 30 2014 10:14 PM

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford Suspends Campaign to Seek Help After New Bender Tapes Emerge

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Toronto Mayor Rob Ford speaks during the kick off of his re-election campaign on April 17, 2014.

Photo by GEOFF ROBINS/AFP/Getty Images

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford appears to have a personal problem with drugs and alcohol. But, his biggest political problem has always been his relationship with camera phones. The problem? They love him. A series of surreptitiously recorded videos (among other things) famously undid his time as mayor and left him little more than a city figurehead. Even still, Ford soldiered on, even throwing his hat back in the ring for reelection. On Wednesday, however, another video surfaced that may end his chance of a political comeback.

Here’s what the latest Ford tape looked like, according to the Globe and Mail:

A second video of Toronto Mayor Rob Ford smoking what has been described as crack-cocaine by a self-professed drug dealer was secretly filmed in his sister’s basement early Saturday morning. The clip, which was viewed by two Globe and Mail reporters, shows Mr. Ford taking a drag from a long copper-coloured pipe, exhaling a cloud of smoke, his right arm convulsing. The footage 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.”
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The video comes on the heels of an audio recording of the mayor published in the Toronto Sun. “The recording, covertly taped by a patron of Sullie Gorman’s Monday night, captures the mayor being unruly as he’s ordering booze, complaining about his wife Renata and making lewd comments about mayoral contender Karen Stintz,” the Sun reports.

The latest round of recorded evidence was enough to compel Ford to seek help, according to his lawyer, Dennis Morris. Morris says Ford “‘realizes he needs help for substance abuse’ but would not say what steps his client will take,” according to the CBC. Ford told the Sun he’s “ready to take a break” from the campaign to “go get help.”

Elliot Hannon is a writer in Washington, D.C. Follow him on Twitter.

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