Ford was mayor of Toronto in May 2013 when Gawker's John Cook published a story purporting to have seen a video of the conservative politician smoking crack. In the two years since the scandal first broke, the video was unable to be published as it was being used as evidence in a court case against Ford's former driver Alexander "Sandro" Lisi. The video was played in court last week and has been released to the public after the charges against Lisi were dropped. In the footage, a seemingly drunken Ford holds a glass pipe and rambles semi-incoherently about Justin Trudeau, calling him a "faggot."
At the time the scandal began, Ford denied the existence of the video and repeatedly claimed he had never smoked crack. In November 2013, he finally admitted to purchasing illegal drugs and smoking crack, and in April 2014, he took a leave of absence from office to seek help for substance abuse. Upon his return, Ford admitted to more drug use but resumed his re-election campaign for mayor. He ultimately had to withdraw his bid after he began to experience health problems and was diagnosed with malignant liposarcoma, which he died from in March 2016.
Despite withdrawing his bid for mayor, he ran for a council seat while undergoing treatment and won by a landslide. After his death, his nephew won a byelection to overtake his position. When he died from cancer at the age of 46, he had reportedly never seen the video himself.