Toronto Mayor Crack Video Fund Hits $200K Target
As aides bail, owners of Rob Ford video can't be found
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 28, 2013 1:43 AM CDT
Rob Ford makes a statement to the media after the resignation of his communications aides George Christopoulos and Isaac Ransom yesterday.   (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Chris Young)
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(Newser) – Gawker's "Crackstarter" fundraiser to buy a video that allegedly shows Toronto mayor Rob Ford smoking crack has hit its $200,000 target—but they haven't been able to make contact with the video's owners. More than 8,000 people chipped in to push the campaign over its goal and Gawker says that if is unable to obtain the crack video, the cash will go to a "Canadian nonprofit institution that helps people suffering from drug addiction and its various consequences," the Toronto Star reports.

Ford—who denies being a crack fiend—told reporters over the weekend that the video, viewed by Gawker and Toronto Star editors, doesn't even exist, adding that the media is a "bunch of maggots." Ford fired his chief of staff last week and two more top aides quit yesterday, the Globe and Mail reports. The mayor's press secretary and his assistant decided to go "down a different avenue," Ford told reporters, flanked by his brother Doug, whose past as a suburban hashish kingpin was the subject of an exposé over the weekend.