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Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Spitzer Still Hanging Around...For Now

- I find it more than just a little ironic that, as reported today by James Odato in the Albany Times Union, it was an inquiry by that paper into the use by Governor Spitzer of a state airplane to fly from Buffalo to Washington DC on February 13 that first brought the allegations of his starring role as Client 9 in his tryst that evening to light. It was, of course, the inquiries by that paper, however induced by Spitzer's office they may have been, into Senator Bruno's use of state helicopters for his personal political purposes that triggered the Troopergate affair which cost the governor political and personal capital that he could surely use today. Live by the sword, die by the sword, as they say.

It's well past noon as I write this; and that was the most recent rumored time that Spitzer was supposed to announce his resignation. Elizabeth Benjamin, writing on her Daily Politics blog, notes that talk has now turned from "if" the governor will resign to "when" that will occur. The NY Times also reports that the governor's aides expect him to resign.

Lt. Gov. David A. Paterson and his staff have begun laying the groundwork for him to take over as governor and are reaching out to members of the Legislature, the aides said.
And meanwhile, more unseemly details continue to emerge. (And that face on Spitzer will, I'm sure, serve as a lasting legacy of the soon-to-be ex-governor.)

A word about Senator Bruno: at a time when few people would criticize him for gloating, he showed admirable class and restraint in his public pronouncement on the matter:
“I think it’s very, very unfortunate and I feel very badly for the governor’s wife, for his children....The important thing for the people of New York State is that people in office do the right thing.” [NY Times]
This as opposed to the Assembly Minority Leader James Tedisco, who is already threatening Spitzer with impeachment "if he does not resign within the next 24 to 48 hours." Frankly, I find that rather unseemly and cruel. You don't have to like the governor, but I think that a little compassion is called for here, especially for his family....and particularly for his three teenage daughters. One can only imagine what they will have to go through in the days, months, and years to come. Whatsmore, one could easily argue that Rep. Tedisco is being highly hypocritical here since, while this scandal is (thus far) mostly a personal affair, the investigations surrounding Senator Bruno involve alleged abuses of his public office and taxpayer money.

The governor will resign....and if he doesn't, you can bet there will be calls from both sides of the aisle for him to do so. Some have mentioned the cases of David Vitter and Larry Craig, who have thus far survived their embarrassing sexual imbroglios. But Spitzer's sanctimonious crusade against corruption, combined with the fact that he likely violated federal law regarding transporting prostitutes across state lines, plus the arrogance that has burned bridges to Democrats and Republicans alike, would make it absolutely impossible for him to govern effectively. He has to go, and he will in very short order. (Reader Glimmerglass alertly noticed that Googling "New York State" returns a link to WWW.NY.GOV, with a sublink entitled Governor David Paterson.)

10 Comments: said...

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steve in nc said...

An overdue Mazel Tov, Alan! And, you had no sooner posted that great "happy couple" photo, than that other couple(?) stole your limelight.

There have been so many of these, and for the life of me, I can't understand why the women involved are willing to "stand by their men" for public photo ops at those moments. The men have cojones the size of planets to even ask that of their wives. If I were the wife, I'd only stand there at the press conference if the disgraced pol got down on his knees and sang "Frankie & Johnnie" naked on the stage first.

I'm not a big Hillary fan, but I would love it if she wins and then divorces Bill her first month in office.

Alan, perhaps the Head Chef will yet get another gig from the soon-to-be-former First Lady of NY. She should brush up on her "humble pie" recipies -- the dude at the head of the table will require many portions. And for musical accompanyment, perhaps that old hit from the 60s by the Searchers?

Hope you feel better, Alan. Go take a honeymoon before we get any deeper in the triple crown season and can't spare you.

alan said...

Steve in nc: Thanks much! We leave for our honeymoon Thursday by hook or by crook, with or without my cold and the Head Chef's back being slightly out of whack.

jk said...

The Feds fastrack the Spitzer investigation while the Bruno investigation drags on. The Dems win the special upstate election and a week later, Spitzer is toast. Spitzer deserves his fate but can they at least kick Bruno out as well? Time to clean the ENTIRE house in Albany.

Anonymous said...

Has any Democrat asked Spitzer to resign yet?
If not,Why not?

alan said...

>>Has any Democrat asked Spitzer to resign yet?

Yes. Me! :-)

>>If not,Why not?

I think they're giving him some time and space to do the right thing, and showing a little compassion. Even Bruno hasn't explicitly demanded his resignation as of yet. If he shows signs that he's going to dig in, I think the appeals will be bipartisan.

If your point is that Democrats are hypocritical in these matters when it comes to the GOP vs their own kind, than that point is well-taken. However, it absolutely applies to the reverse situation as well, in my opinion.

Ernie (Client 13) said...

Anonymous said...

Reading the papers and watching the news on T.V.I couldn't tell that Spitzers is a Democrat!

Anonymous said...

NY Post: Spitzer’s been using hookers for at least six years.

Michael said...

I love that should Spitzer resign, Bruno will become the Lt. Gov.