Toronto Mayor Rob Ford, who had become a popular punchline for late night comedians due to his odd behavior an occasional outburst, has announced plans to take a leave of absence from his job to seek treatment for an alcohol problem. The news comes just as a reports have surfaced of a second video coming to light showing Ford smoking what may be crack cocaine. He has admitted to smoking crack in the past.
Ford, who is in the midst of seeking re-election, said Wednesday he’s taking a leave from both his job and the campaign, according to USA Today
. The Toronto mayoral election is scheduled for Oct. 27.
"I have a problem with alcohol, and the choices I have made while under the influence. I have struggled with this for some time," Ford said in a prepared statement.
Canadian newspaper The Globe and Mail says two of its reporters have viewed a video of Ford smoking what appeared to be crack in the basement of his sister’s home on Saturday. The reporters were shown the video by a “self-professed drug dealer,” USA Today reports.
After a similar video surfaced a year ago, Toronto's city council stripped Ford of most powers, although he retained his job as mayor.
Dennis Morris, Ford's lawyer, told USA Today he spoke with Ford on Wednesday. "He acknowledges he has a substance abuse problem and he wants to do something about it," Morris said.