Cheat-Seeking Missles

Monday, March 10, 2008

Spouse Abuse

As New York governor and superhero crusader in his own mind Eliot Spitzer faces the camera and admits he's just another guy who thought power would cover his sins -- just like the guys he so aggressively prosecuted to win the governor's mansion -- keep an eye on his wife.

There she is, playing the faithful political wife role, and through the entire clip, the camera never once inches over to the left to bring her more completely into the frame. It's as if to the media she is nonexistent.

Watch her eyes. For the most part, they are locked on the statement he's reading. Every once in a while she looks quickly at him with an expressionless expression, then returns her gaze to the sheet of paper.

That's shame, folks. She can't bring herself to look at the man she married. She certainly can't look at the people in the audience, much less the people on TV. She may remember him saying:
"I had a simple rule. I never asked if a case was popular or unpopular. I never asked if it was big or small. I simply asked if it was right, or wrong."
Apparently the simple rule did not apply to the person who was supposed to be closest to him, the person he was supposed to give the great gift of trust to.

That's why, despite the camerawork, she is anything but nonexistent. She is, in fact, central to this story:
Mr. Spitzer is likely to resign, perhaps as early as today, according to a person close to him, which would effectively end his political career just 16 months after he was elected New York's governor by a wide margin. "But first he's dealing with this personal tragedy at home," this person said.
It's not covorting with prostitutes that caused Spitzer's fall from grace -- it's idiotically defying the basic moral rule of not cheating on your wife. No wife, no resignation. Don't kid yourself; the morals of politicians only go so far.

As a public service for those who haven't seen the sordid details yet (you cave-dwellers!), here they are, courtesy of WSJ, which also provided the indent copy above:

Mr. Spitzer had registered under the name "George Fox," according to a person briefed on the situation, using his own Fifth Avenue Manhattan address. Mr. Fox, a hedge-fund consultant, is a longtime friend and supporter of the governor's. A person close to Mr. Spitzer said Mr. Fox had no involvement in the matter.

At around 9:30 p.m., the woman, who used the name Kristen, entered Room 871, as designated by the client, the complaint says. Shortly after midnight, Kristen reported to her boss that the appointment with Client-9 went well and she collected $4,300, partly as a deposit for future trysts, it says. "I'm here for a purpose. I know what my purpose is," it quotes Kristen as saying after the encounter.

If you want your fill of sordid details -- four pages of it -- where to you turn? The Daily News, of course.

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