Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau's admission that he has smoked pot appears to have sparked other politicians to come clean about their experiences with the drug, with the Premier of Ontario and Toronto Mayor Rob Ford both admitting on Wednesday that they have toked the reefer.
“Oh, yeah. I've smoked a lot of it,” Ford told reporters in Toronto, without going further into the where or the when or the why.
It is a not-so-stunning admission of drug use from a politician who frequently faces questions about his sobriety and allegations that he was recently videotaped smoking from a crack pipe.
Those with an eye on Toronto City Hall were already aware of Ford’s dalliances.
Ford was caught by police with a joint in his pocket during a roadside stop in Florida in 1999. The next year, he was elected as a Toronto city councillor.
Ford was charged with failing to give a breath sample in the Florida incident and briefly denied the drug story during his successful 2010 mayoral campaign.
He later came clean about the incident, but has otherwise denied consuming anything but a “few beers” on a Saturday night.
Ford should be commended for his honesty on the subject. So many other right-leaning politicians have either refused to address, or denied outright, their history with smoking pot.
Both Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird and Justice Minister Peter MacKay say they’ve never tried it (with MacKay even exposing himself as completely unaware of Canada’s current set of pot laws).
The Prime Minister’s Office said recently that Stephen Harper is asthmatic and therefore has never smoked.
Although the Globe and Mail dug up this chestnut, which he told an Ontario high school during his time as the leader of the Canadian Alliance:
“I like to tell people I was offered a joint once, but I was too drunk to smoke it.”
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Wynne, meantime, admitted to reporters that she has smoked pot, but not for 35 years and not since her children were born.
She said she used pot "infrequently" and said Canada should have a debate over whether to legalize the drug.
Until that debate plays out in full, we will continue to force politicians to fess up about their history with weed.
Wynne's opponents, Conservative Tim Hudak and NDP Andrea Horwath, both admitted to smoking pot during the 2011 provincial election.
Liberal MPs Marc Garneau and Scott Brison both recently admitted to inhaling, as did three Winnipeg city councillors.
But at least one left-leaning Canadian politician (aside from the asthmatic Prime Minister Stephen Harper, of course) says he has never sampled pot.
Nova Scotia Liberal Leader supports decriminalizing pot, but says he's never used it himself.
"It probably has something to do with a mother who was a sheriff and five brothers who are law enforcement officers," he told CBC News.
No wonder he’s for decriminalization.
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