Ford vows to continue 'war' against opponents
Joshua Freeman, CP24.com
Published Tuesday, November 19, 2013 5:48PM EST
Last Updated Tuesday, November 19, 2013 6:23PM EST
Embattled Mayor Rob Ford vowed again Tuesday to unseat his council colleagues in the next election after city council took the unprecedented step of stripping the mayor of much of his power Monday.
“I’ve declared war. I’m very, very upset,” Ford said during a live interview with CP24’s Stephen LeDrew, adding that former allies have ‘stabbed him in the back.’
“It’s all politics and they turned it into a coup,” Ford said, vowing to run candidates against those who have opposed him.
Ford reiterated that he hasn’t been charged with anything by police so far and said his council colleagues are punishing him “for isolated incidents.”
Referencing the Bible, Ford said everybody sins and people shouldn’t be so quick to judge him.
A defiant Ford said he’ll continue to return all his calls and carry out his functions, despite having been stripped of the power to make key appointments and having his office budget reduced in size to that of a councillor.
“I'll still function,” Ford said. “If I have to bring volunteers into my office I'll function."
Acknowledging that he’s lost public trust, Ford said he knows he has to work to regain the confidence of the electorate.
“I'm starting from ground zero and working my way up,” he said.
Speaking as his normally outspoken brother, Coun. Doug Ford, sat silently beside him, Ford said it broke his heart when he saw federal finance minister and close family friend Jim Flaherty break down when asked about the mayor’s drug use.
“There was one person who supported me when I was running for mayor, one person. And that was Jim Flaherty,” Ford said. “And when Jim Flaherty breaks down – that ripped my heart out. I’m speechless at how badly I let him down.”
He added that he knows he’s let his family down, including his late father, who started the family in politics.
Drugs and questionable company
Ford also said he “guarantees” he’s quit drinking for good, as well as drugs.
“Did I experiment with drugs when I was younger at university and growing up? Sure I did,” Ford said. “If you want to call them party drugs or whatever you call them – sure I did. But no – I do not do drugs.”
He also acknowledged drinking to excess, but reiterated that he is working with a trainer and unspecified medical professionals.
When asked why he frequently keeps the company of people with criminal records, Ford acknowledged he’s made errors.
“Maybe I'm too nice,” Ford said. “Maybe I did hang around with the wrong company.”
Asked about his relationship with accused drug dealer Alexander “Sandro” Lisi, Ford said he couldn’t comment on his relationship with his occasional driver as his case is currently before the courts.
“I didn’t even know Mr. Lisi two years ago,” Ford said. “I’m not going to get into that relationship because he’s before the courts and that’s the bottom line.”
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