NBC’s national morning news show “Today” opened its Tuesday broadcast with a decidedly international topic: the scandal surrounding Toronto mayor Rob Ford and his admitted use of crack.
In a sit down interview that could make almost any viewer raise a brow, Matt Lauer hammered Mayor Ford, calling the leader out on his use of “semantics” to dodge questions about his alleged and admitted past drug use.
“No, I’m not [a crack addict],” Ford told Lauer while seated next to his brother and legal counsel Doug Ford. “They said, ‘Do you use crack cocaine?’ No! Have I tried crack cocaine?…”
Lauer interjected, “That’s a game of semantics.”
During the interview, Ford also admits he is not in any drug or alcohol treatment programs, despite his brother noting that Mayor Ford will go on a weekend drinking “binge” every once in awhile. Ford states he “has weight issues, I’ve been training every day,” though.
“Show me the video” of the crack use, Ford demanded of Lauer. “I want to see it. I can barely remember it. I was very inebriated.”
When the opening seg ended, Savannah Guthrie said from the “Today” anchor desk with her colleagues, “We’re all speechless.” Lauer mentioned that his quick trip up north to Canada for the sit down led to some notable interactions with state employees.
“From the person who drove me, to the customs agent who check my passport, they asked, ‘Why are you here?’ I said I’m doing an interview. They said ‘not the mayor…'”
You can view Lauer’s interview with Mayor Ford below: