Toronto Mayor Rob Ford, who last week admitted he had smoked crack cocaine in a "drunken stupor," was forced to apologize anew Thursday for yet another misdeed: using graphic language on live television.
The embattled mayor, under fire for months since video surfaced appearing to show him smoking a crack pipe, delivered the crude remarks earlier in the day as he made another defiant stand against detractors and scuttled new allegations of aberrant behavior.
Ford shocked reporters and TV viewers when he denied reports that he made lewd comments to a female aide last year. In coarse words, he told a gaggle of journalists that he never told the female staffer he wanted to have oral sex with her.
"I've never said that in my life to her; I would never do that," he said.
The father of two school-age children said is "happily married" and used more crude language saying he gets enough satisfaction at home.
The comments came in response to newly released court documents, which detail more alleged bad behavior from the mayor, ranging from drunken driving to verbal abuse.
Furious city councilors, who voted Wednesday to call on Ford to take a leave of absence, turned their backs on him when he addressed the council later Thursday.
"This is beyond a leave of absence. He needs to resign," said councilor Denzil Minnan-Wong, reported the AP. "This mayor thinks he is above the law, he is not."
In a brief news conference later Thursday, Ford said he was sorry and was getting help from health care professionals — but refused to step down.
"I want to apologize for my graphic remarks this morning. Yesterday, I mentioned, was the second worst day of my life, except for the death of my father," he said, adding he was under "tremendous" stress, which was largely of his own making. "I used unforgivable language."
He said he acted on "complete impulse" with his remarks.
"I wish you to understand I am accepting responsibility for the challenges I face," he said.
Also Thursday, Ford threatened legal action against former aides who voiced their worries to police concerning his drug use.
In the court documents, released Thursday as part of a drug case against Ford's friend and occasional driver, police interviews with Ford's ex-staffers reveal concerns about drugs and drunken driving. One staffer alleges he saw Ford "impaired, driving very fast," scaring a female staffer who was in the car with him. Another staffer claims Ford was drunk in his office 15 to 20 times in the one year the staffer worked for him.
Ford acknowledged he may have had alcohol while behind the wheel.
"I might have had some drinks and driven, which is absolutely wrong. But outside of that, I've said what I have to say," he said.
The documents also describe another incident in which Ford was "very inebriated, verbally abusive and inappropriate" with a female staffer on St. Patrick's Day, according to another former staff member.
As he spoke about the legal action he planned to take and denied making lewd remarks to a female staffer, Ford was wearing a Toronto Argonauts jersey, ahead of the team competing for the Canadian Football League Eastern Conference title this weekend.
Hours later, the Argonauts issued a statement to express that it was "disappointing" seeing Ford talk that way while wearing their jersey.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
First published November 14 2013, 10:49 AM