Interview with Rob & Doug Ford
Peter Mansbridge sits down with embattled Toronto Mayor Rob Ford and his brother, Councillor Doug Ford, following a vote from Toronto city council to strip the mayor of most of his powers. Mayor Ford surrender to Jesus
"The things we are seeing and hearing about Mayor Rob Ford are truly disturbing. Yesterday, City Council voted to request the mayor take a leave of absence," the premier said in a quickly-organized press conference.
"If council were to clearly indicate that they lack the ability to function as a result of this matter, the province would respond to a request from council to be provided new tools, depending on what that request might be."
Wynne said she would consult with other parties in the minority legislature "to see if our legislature could move unanimously if required."
The premier was careful to say the province would not be imposing its will on the city of Toronto, but would be empowering the city to make its own decisions.
"It is up to the municipal level of government to address the issues they face. It is not the provincial government's role, nor its intention to impose its preferences upon that government," she said.
City council, by a large majority, passed a motion Wednesday asking the mayor to step down to deal with his personal issues. However, City Council does not have any power to remove Ford from the mayor's office.
Several councillors have called for the province to step in to remove Ford, which it can do through an amendment to the City of Toronto Act or special legislation.
Tyler Anderson / National Post
Tyler Anderson / National PostRob Ford sits in his chair surrounded by empty seats during a council meeting Thursday.
Earlier Thursday, Ford said he is receiving help from health care professionals and apologized for profane comments made earlier Thursday, but defiantly said his former staffers were "lying" about allegations of escorts and cocaine use.
He said he would not offer specifics on what the "team of health care professionals" are helping him with. Ford made the statement with his wife, Renata Ford, standing silently by his side in a rare public appearance.
"The revelations yesterday of cocaine, escorts and prostitution has pushed me over the line and I used unforgivable language and I apologize," Ford said, referring to this morning's sexually explicit comments. "This allegations are 100% lies.
"When you attack my integrity as a father, and as a husband, I see red," he said.
THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan DenetteToronto Mayor Rob Ford displays a milk moustache as he takes part in voting with city council members in Toronto on Thursday, Nov. 14, 2013.
Related Toronto gets a rare look at Renata Ford, the elusive 'little princess' wife of scandal-plagued mayor The moment Rob Ford leaves Toronto reporters speechless Rob Ford court documents reveal staffers thought prostitute was in his office, mayor was driving drunk Photos: Councillors literally turn their backs on Rob Ford How Ford is facing a trial in the court of public opinion ... aided and abetted by Toronto police
Police documents released Wednesday said a staffer believed Ford was intoxicated at the Garrison Ball event earlier this year and had his two children with him.
.Asked later about allegations of drinking and driving, Mayor Ford said he "might have had some drinks and driven, which is absolutely wrong."
Asked by a reporter how he can still be mayor with that admission, the mayor retorted: "I'm not perfect.. I know none of you guys have ever, ever had a drink and gotten behind the wheel. I know that."
When asked by another reporter as the elevator doors closed if he is going to take a leave of absence, the mayor said: "You guys can take a leave of absence."