The big news in the ongoing Rob Ford crack cocaine scandal is this: the video of the Toronto mayor allegedly smoking crack cocaine “is gone,” an intermediary has told Gwaker.com.
Or is it? Evidence of the video, which a reporter at Gawker and two at the Toronto Star say they have seen and Ford denies, might just be in some sealed police documents that the CBC and five other media organizations are asking the courts to unseal. CBC News reports Wednesday that the documents it wants are from the arrest of a man in Fort McMurray, Alta. That man was brought to Toronto where he was charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of Anthony Smith, a man who was shown in a photo alongside Ford, which was provided by the same source who tried to sell a video of the mayor allegedly smoking crack cocaine to the Star and Gawker. While the RCMP holding the video in question seems like a bit of a long shot, CBC writes that unsealing the documents would allow it to “find out whether the RCMP seized a cellphone or computer that may contain video evidence connected to the Ford affair.”
While the question of the video continues, Ford is trying to get on with “business as usual,” to use his own words. This includes finding replacement staff for the six who were either fired or quit over a two-week period. The newest addition to the mayor’s team is a Dan Jacobs, a part-time radio producer who worked on Ford’s Sunday talk-radio program on Newstalk 1010. The Toronto Star reports that the mayor hired his former producer, who also owned a DJ company, worked at a company that manufactured ski and snowboard products and was a lifeguard. Jacobs’ addition comes the day after Ford was seen giving four new young staffers a tour of the office. While Ford lost some of his top staff members (including his chief of staff and press secretary), most of the new hires are young, with little or no political experience.
Thanks to The Globe and Mail reporter Elizabeth Church for tweeting this photo of Jacobs on the job. His other job, that is:
There could be more "spin" in Mayor Rob Ford's office. Latest staffer,Dan Jacobs, also a DJ. pic.twitter.com/okhThzvqh0
— Elizabeth Church (@lizchurchto) June 5, 2013
Ford has also started to speak with media, at least the ones that are more sympathetic towards him. In an interview with the Toronto Sun, the mayor said that he would “absolutely” survive the crack scandal. “I return every single phone call and every email that comes into my office — like a great politician should do and there is very few of us left,” he told the Sun.
Oh, and late-night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel still thinks the crack allegations against Ford are pretty funny. He used the scandal for a bit on his show for the second time on Tuesday night (more on the first one here). In the clip, Ford (played by actor Jim O’Heir) gives a tour of Toronto, which ends badly.