November 19th, 2013
08:41 AM ET

Embattled Toronto Mayor Stripped of Power, Vows "Outright War"

Embattled Mayor Rob Ford vowed "outright war" after Toronto's City Council voted to strip him of most of his powers Monday in a tumultuous meeting during which a charging Ford knocked down one of its members. CNN's Nic Robertson reports.

Nearly two weeks after Ford admitted to smoking crack cocaine in a "drunken stupor" - an admission forced by a drug probe that resulted in extortion charges against a friend - the mayor said he was done apologizing. He called Monday's vote "a coup d'etat" and compared it to Iraq's invasion of Kuwait in 1990, warning council members, "What goes around, comes around, friends."

"If you think American-style politics is nasty, you guys have just attacked Kuwait," he said to groans and laughter in the council chambers. "And you will never see something - mark my words, my friends, this is going to be outright war in the next election, and I am going to do everything in my power to beat you guys."

Undeterred, the council voted 36-5 to slash the budget of the mayor's office and transfer most of his duties to the deputy mayor. City Councilor Karen Stintz said Ford "doesn't understand the issues he's facing," and Monday's votes reduce him to "a figurehead."

"We are a great city, and the reality is Mayor Ford does not represent the face of the city," Stintz said. "We are taking the steps we're taking to give the deputy mayor the powers and the responsibility and the staff to exercise the functions that the mayor no longer can."

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