Toronto Mayor Rob Ford compared himself to Kuwait and promised an “outright war” on Monday moments before city council voted to revoke several several key powers of the mayor’s office.
“This, folks, reminds me of when ... Saddam (Hussein) attacked Kuwait. And President (George) Bush said, 'I warn you, I warn you, I warn you do not attack.' Well, folks. If you think American-style politics is nasty, you guys have just attacked Kuwait,” Ford said in a bizarre, extended diatribe that came at the end of a frenetic day at Toronto City Hall.“And you will never see something, mark my words, friends. This is going to be outright war in the next election. I will do everything in my power to defeat you guys."
Council has already voted to remove some authorities from Ford and place them in the hands of the Deputy Mayor. The key motion passed on Monday was a decision to pull some $800,000 from the mayor’s budget and give it to Deputy Mayor Norm Kelly, who will be tasked with several new responsibilities.
The vote came at the end of perhaps the most chaotic day in the council’s recent history, as Ford continues to refuse to take a temporary leave of office to seek substance abuse treatment following admissions that he smoked crack cocaine and drove under the influence of alcohol, and after launching an obscene and abusive diatribe on live television.
On Monday, the mayor and his brother bullied, jeered and shouted down members of council and the public in attendance. The day was highlighted by Coun. Doug Ford engaging members of the public by shouting such insults as "punk" and "scumbag". Members of the crowd shouted "shame, shame, shame" at the mayor.
Meantime, Ford led a personal security guard through the crowd, taking photographs of those in attendance, whom he described as socialists and NDP supporters. As chaos ensued, Ford charged through a crowd and knocked Coun. Pam McConnell to the ground. He was later forced to apologize for leaving the councillor with a fat lip.