UPDATE 3-Toronto Mayor Ford admits he smoked crack; will not resign

Tue Nov 5, 2013 5:29pm EST
 
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By Cameron French

TORONTO Nov 5 (Reuters) - Toronto Mayor Rob Ford admitted on Tuesday he has smoked crack cocaine, probably "in one of my drunken stupors," but insisted he's not an addict and said he would stay in office and run for reelection next year.

Speaking just days after Toronto's police chief confirmed that police have recovered a copy of a video that two media organizations have said shows the mayor smoking the drug, Ford said he had smoked crack about a year ago.

"Yes I have smoked crack cocaine... Probably in one of my drunken stupors, probably approximately about a year ago," he told reporters outside his office.

Later, he returned to address the media with an emotional formal statement. "To the residents of Toronto, I know I have let you down, and I can't do anything else but apologize," he said.

Elected in 2010 on a cost-cutting platform, Ford has been able to maintain strong voter support in his suburban base even as the scandal has escalated. A poll taken after Police Chief Bill Blair confirmed the existence of the video put Ford's approval rating at 44 percent, up five points from a previous poll.

But while Ford's popular support has held strong, his once rock-solid supporters at City Hall have started wavering.   Continued...