TORONTO – Toronto newspaper editorials are calling for Mayor Rob Ford to step down, after police Chief Bill Blair revealed officers have retrieved a video allegedly showing the mayor smoking crack cocaine.
The Toronto Star — one of two media outlets that viewed the video before Blair confirmed its existence — said Friday it’s “time for Ford to step down.”
In an editorial, the Star wrote: “If Ford possesses even a scintilla of respect and concern for the city he is supposed to lead, he will step down as mayor.”
The Toronto Sun said in its editorial that it “will continue to support Ford’s fiscal agenda, even though we can no longer support the man.” The newspaper had backed Ford in his 2010 mayoral bid.
The National Post’s position is that “Ford must step down until the matter is fully resolved,” adding that “Toronto cannot be led by a man under active police scrutiny for his admitted connections to criminals, and his alleged connection to criminal activities.”
While the Star, the Post and the Sun were more direct in their editorials, the Globe and Mail simply asked: “how can he remain mayor if he will not even attempt to answer to any of this?”
“I have no reason to resign,” Ford said Thursday. He refused to address Blair’s comments, saying he could not as the matter was before the courts. As Ford himself has not been charged, legal experts have told CityNews he is free to comment.
Councillors, including left-leaning Shelley Carroll and centrist Ana Bailao, have also called on Ford to step down. However, he cannot be forcibly removed from office: Municipal law makes no provision for removal unless a person is convicted and jailed for a criminal offence.