Wednesday, March 12, 2008

3-12-08: The Spitzer Scandal

The Elliot Spitzer scandal is an interesting one on several levels. First, he’s a governor of a very influential state. He’s also a big Hillary Clinton supporter, and a noted super delegate. But, of all things, he was a famed New York Attorney General who fought to stop a great deal of crime, including prostitution rings.

The real issue that Spitzer simply couldn’t avoid was that he could be charged with a federal crime. Apparently there is a 98 year old law called the Mann Act, which was put in place to prevent white slavery and the sex trade, which prohibits the transportation of a woman across state lines for immoral purposes. It’s a federal crime, and there have been some famous members of societies, like Chuck Berry, Charlie Chaplin, and Charles Manson (watch out Charlie Sheen!), who have been charged under the Mann Act. Spitzer could face jail time. That’s pretty significant.

The other interesting part is how other politicians reacted. New York is in a bit of a budget crisis, and the timing of this is absolutely dreadful. But nobody was exactly coming to Spitzer’s aid to help him get through this. It would be an immense distraction. I’m actually glad no one did. Not that I dislike Spitzer; I just like how politicians actually (at least pretended to) care about the state’s well-being.

Spitzer comes out like a hypocrite in all of this, which he is. Though, I’m sure if he is found to have funded the organization, it will be a lot worse. He did something incredibly reckless, and immoral, and he deserves punishment. I’m not sure how this will pan out, but it’s not good for American politics in general. I’m not going to say “the Democrats had it coming!” and say that not just Republicans get into scandals. That doesn’t do anything, and nobody looks good in this. It just points out the obvious that even the “holiest” of politicians… have holes.

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