RON HART: Would you vote for client no. 9?
Sometimes, political events make opinion-page satire so easy.
Former New York attorney general, governor and hooker enthusiast Eliot Spitzer said he will run for New York City comptroller. Spitzer is a man who cannot comptrol himself, but, like fellow New York Democrat and Big Apple mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner, he can troll the Internet for women.
As we have come to know, continuing sex scandals are imperatives of a mature democratic society. Spitzer is a real troll; the whole idea of power usually means you should not have to pay for miscellaneous sex.
What makes the Spitzer race interesting is that he will be opposed by his ex-madam, Kristen Davis, who pimped his expensive call girls to him. She will run as a libertarian, so she has my vote. “But,” you ask, “how can you vote for a professional prostitute who is active in the most degrading profession on Earth?” And I would say, “No, you misunderstand. I am not voting for Eliot Spitzer, I’m voting for Kristen Davis.”
Ms. Davis, who has not seen Spitzer since she went to prison – while he avoided prosecution for prostitution and, maybe, money laundering and went scot free – says she ended up broke. Spitzer was rewarded with his own show on CNN (a liberal award much like an Oscar, Grammy or Nobel Prize). It will be fun to watch the debate between madam and Client No. 9, Eliot Spitzer. The last time they debated it was over price.
So we have the heartwarming, classic American story of boy meets madam, madam supplies boy with expensive hooker, boy secretly pays for kinky sex, boy leaves office in disgrace, and boy is relegated to run a redemption race against the madam. It feels like a Norman Rockwell painting.
If you pitched this to Hollywood as a movie script, they would say it is too silly to believe.
If either of them wins the comptroller job, New Yorkers will be citizens of the only state that requires them to remit tax payments by leaving the money on the dresser.
It is not entirely the creepy personal life of the hypocritical Spitzer that makes me dislike him. I would vote for Charlie Sheen if he would balance the budget, provide efficient government services and stay out of my business. To me, Spitzer is the lowest form of bad: a man willing to prosecute high-profile people on dubious charges solely for his own political advantage. He ruined people’s lives by announcing, with no remorse, that he was going after them. He never won a white-collar case, but without conscience, he hurt people along the way.
He was like a politically ambitious, egotistical, maniacal bureaucrat out of “Atlas Shrugged.” Like North Carolina prosecutor Mike Nifong in the Duke lacrosse case, political meddling in the Terri Schiavo case and those in Eric Holder’s Justice Department who forced the prosecution of George Zimmerman (even when the local police and prosecutor said there was no evidence), prosecutors and politics do not mix. Spitzer wants the comptroller job because he would once again have subpoena power, which he can use to wage vendettas and showboat media-driven prosecutions to advance his personal agenda.
Neither Spitzer nor Weiner has shown much genuine remorse for how they embarrassed themselves and hurt their families. As lifelong politicians, their first reaction was to huddle with their advisers to see how quickly they could plot their comebacks. Both got to keep their $3 million war chests. Only in politics are disgraced elected officials rewarded by being able to keep donations.
Both men announced their candidacies by releasing the news at midnight. Weiner did so with a YouTube video. Nothing says a man has learned his lesson about creepy sex-ploits more than being on his personal computer at midnight.
The sad thing is that both Weiner and Spitzer (Weiner Spitzer, if you will) are surging in the polls. What does it say about liberal New Yorkers that they are willing to let these men represent them again? No, Bill Clinton “did not have sexual relations with that woman.” Neither did Weiner. But Mark Sanford, Sen. David Vitter and Eliot Spitzer did.
So the lesson for our kids is that, if you are going to lie about sex, you might as well have it. The consequences are the same.
-A syndicated op-ed humorist, award winning author and TV/radio commentator, you can reach him at Ron@RonaldHart.com, Twitter @RonaldHart or at visit RonaldHart.com.