The top 5 moments from Conrad Black's Ford interview
Mayor Rob Ford's much anticipated head-to-head with disgraced media baron and convicted felon Conrad Black turned out to be (perhaps not surprisingly) devoid of any truly hard questions. During the show, titled "Conversation with Conrad," Black wasn't particularly interested in picking apart Ford's arsenal of stock responses and was instead content to answer many of his own questions and share a mutual dislike of the Toronto Star (Black used to control Hollinger International, the former owner of the National Post, among many other newspapers).
The funny thing is, despite the friendly atmosphere, Rob Ford always manages to say something controversial, provocative or just downright stupid. As such, the interview did produce several choice moments, especially near the end when Rob Ford accused police of using Sandro Lisi as a "prop" and Daniel Dale of "taking pictures of little kids." Here's a quick breakdown of the key moments.
Ford opened saying he would take a pop blood or urine test to prove he's free of drink and drugs. Moments later, he claimed he has never been drunk at work, though his former staffer Chris Fickel told police he'd seen Ford "intoxicated numerous times including at the office, football practices and events."
THE GRAVY TRAIN
Council's decision to strip away many of Rob Ford's powers and hand them to Deputy Mayor Norm Kelly was "completely illegal" in the mayor's opinion, though he has so far declined to take legal action. Ford rounded off by accusing council of excess spending: "Basically, in two weeks, they've gotten back on the gravy train."
PROJECT BRAZEN 2
While being lobbed softball questions by a sympathetic Black, Ford accused Police Chief Bill Blair of being politically motivated in the ongoing police investigation against him. "If I've done something illegal, I've told the police to arrest me," he said. "I definitely think this is political." Ford then accused police of using Sandro Lisi as a "prop" in their supposed vendetta against him.
Moments later, Ford offered some insight into how the ongoing scandal is impacting his home life. "It's ripping our family apart," he said of the constant media attention. Ford told Black that his kids look out the window and worry that their father is going to get killed. "Keep my family out of it."
Near the end of the interview, Ford accused Toronto Star reporter Daniel Dale of "taking pictures of little kids" during a notorious incident back in May 2012. Dale has denied looking over the mayor's fence (as was claimed at the time) while photographing a parcel of land Ford was planning to buy. "I don't want to say that word, but you start thinking 'What's this guy all about.'"
Pop quiz: Name the number one issue surrounding Rob Ford right now. Yep, it's his weight, of course. The mayor told Conrad Black that he thinks voters will support him more if he loses 60 or 70 pounds in time for the next election.
Chris Bateman is a staff writer at blogTO. Follow him on Twitter at @chrisbateman.