Toronto’s ‘Ass-gate’ scandal just got even weirder.
Sarah Thomson kicked things up a notch Monday morning, telling two radio hosts she thought Mayor Rob Ford was high on cocaine when he allegedly groped her buttocks last Thursday.
Thomson, who sparked a media frenzy with her claims that Ford inappropriately touched her at an event, was a guest on Kiss 92.5’s The Roz & Mocha Show. Thomson didn’t pull any punches when asked if she thought the mayor was under the influence of drugs.
“I thought he was, yes, but I don’t know,” she said.
Thomson said she researched the signs of cocaine use after the alleged incident.
“I looked it up and you know, sweaty, talking quickly, out of it, arrogant – like all of these things were on there,” she said. “What I read on Google, I would think he’s either on that or some other substance.”
"I don’t have actual proof, it’s just based on the symptoms,” she said. “And the symptoms I’ve read on cocaine seem to fit.”
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Ford has not yet responded to the drug allegation but has vigorously denied making inappropriate advances toward Thomson, who ran against him for mayor in 2010. Ford's chief of staff, Mark Towhey, has maintained that the mayor drank only water at the Canadian Jewish Political Affairs Committee meeting and was not under the influence of any drugs.
“In my personal opinion, I’ve always said, I don’t know if she’s playing with a full deck from the first time I met her and I told her that that night,” he said.
Decades ago powerful men who sexually assaulted women would call them "hysterical," or "crazy" to debase their credibility. It pushed many assaulted women into silence. Today Mayor Ford stated that he wondered if I was "playing with a full deck" try to discredit me. He will not push me into silence and I hope his accusations do not re-ignite the old fears that once silenced women.
We need an ongoing dialogue to ensure respect for women in the workplace and to create an inclusive and safe society for all.
Thomson also used the post to highlight a part of Ford’s checkered past.
Unlike the Mayor, I do not have a history of lying about my behaviour. Mayor Ford has lied publicly numerous times. He denied the drunken incident where he verbally assaulted a Durham couple during a hockey game but later admitted to it. And During 2010 civic election campaign he denied being arrested for pot possession in Florida and then admitted it and another DUI charge.
The Mayor has a history of denial but usually owns up to his mistakes once the facts become overwhelming and I expect that he will eventually own up to this one.
The 'he said, she said' nature of the entire, bizarre spat prompted a scathing editorial this weekend in The Toronto Star. In it, the newspaper says the city has become a "laughing stock" and slams the mayor for the now infamous photo taken with Thomson.
“Set aside Thomson’s allegations for a moment and consider the photo taken during their encounter. There’s Ford — mouth open, eyes closed, with a mysterious stain blossoming on his shirt — Toronto’s glorious leader. Care to invest in his city? Yes, other photos taken at the event depict Ford in a more flattering light. But this one is front-and-centre; this is the image rocketing around the Internet and prominent in the news. No mayor should appear this way.”
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