Doug Ford touts 'the true story' about Rob Ford's tumultuous career in new book

The late Rob Ford may have had his public struggles with crack cocaine and alcohol, but his brother Doug Ford remembers the former Toronto Mayor as the best politician in the country, in part, because he was beyond influence.

Former Toronto mayor's brother believes he has the support of Ford Nation and hints at a return to politics

Doug Ford talks new book 'Ford Nation'

Politics News

5 years ago
The brother of Rob Ford on the late Toronto mayor's political legacy and personal struggles. 11:01

The late Rob Ford may have had his public struggles with crack and alcohol, but his brother Doug Ford remembers the former Toronto mayor as the best politician in the country, in part, because he was beyond influence.

Ford made the comments in an interview airing Tuesday night on CBC News Network's Power & Politics, while promoting a book he wrote with his brother Rob: Ford Nation: Two Brothers, One Vision — The True Story of the People's Mayor.

"He was the best politician, bar none, over anyone in the country. Rob had his problems, but even his worst enemy would say there's no one that would even come close to Rob when it comes to customer service," Ford told host Rosemary Barton.

"I would take Rob's judgment with a shot of scotch underneath his belt than I would 44 people down at city hall, any day, any time," he added.

The Ford brothers started writing Ford Nation together, but Doug was forced to finish it by himself when his brother died from cancer earlier this year.

The book chronicles the brothers' childhood, family, Rob's career as mayor and subsequent struggles with addiction and sobriety. It also covers Rob's illness and the effect it had on his family.  

Doug said they started writing the book because they wanted an accurate record of the Ford years as mayor in print.

The book states that Rob's political aspirations went higher than municipal politics.

"He wouldn't have stopped at being the mayor of Toronto," Doug writes. "If he was healthy and alive today, he could run for the leadership of the PC Party in Ontario, and I'm sure he would have been chosen. He might've even gone into the federal arena. He really liked Ottawa … going back there to pursue his passion was not at all out of the question."

Forgiving Rob Ford's faults

Doug claims those aspirations were realistic, despite his brother's history of substance abuse, because the voting public were willing to forgive Rob's very human faults.

"People are willing to forgive indiscretions of Bill Clinton, they're willing to forgive indiscretions of Rob Ford having a disease, but they aren't willing to forget or forgive when people are corrupt," Doug said.  

"Rob was one of the most honest politicians I've ever met. Was he honest when he had to admit he had an issue, no, he kept that from a lot of people because he was embarrassed."

Doug said that despite his brother's personal issues, "no one could influence Rob Ford" in his capacity as mayor of Canada's largest city, which is something, he said, missing from federal politics.

"We have a part-time drama teacher running the country," Doug said.

Doug Ford's political future

Doug, who won his brother's Toronto city council seat while Rob served as mayor from 2010 to 2014, is open about his own political ambitions, writing that his "future is not finished ... there are things I want to do and ways I want to be involved in the future of this country."

If Ford does run for office himself, he believes he has the backing of Ford Nation supporters — what he calls "the biggest bloc in Canada outside any political party."

"There are roughly 340,000 people in Ford Nation," he writes toward the end of the book. "That's just in Toronto and doesn't count the hundreds of thousands of supporters throughout the 905, 705, and 519 area codes, not to mention the rest of the country."


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