Monday, March 10, 2008

Should Governor Spitzer resign?

New York Governor Elliot Spitzer is in a pickle now that he's been outed as a client of a very pricey call girl operation. His self-admitted lack of judgment and discretion seems to be an understatement as Steve points out.

All of the juicy details make for interesting press fodder but the question popped up whether he should resign.

It's a good question but one which I'm reluctant to jump on with an enthusiastic "yes."

The difficult part of the analysis is to look at how Bill Clinton skated through his various liaisons, including his famous encounter with intern Monica Lewinsky, and his lack of candor with a federal grand jury. It's difficult to get fired up over Spitzer when his conduct so far seems to be less compelling -- a private tryst not on government property and not with a subordinate. And, unlike Clinton, Spitzer's comments were more forthcoming.

It may well be that Spitzer should resign but the double standard when compared to Clinton is so dramatic that I'm not quite ready to demand it. I am, concerned, just as I was with Clinton, about the possibility of exposing himself to blackmail.

This is not to say that Spitzer deserves a medal and a slap on the back. Given the nod and wink that Dennis Troha got in federal court last week, it's hard to get worked up over the New York scandal. At the end of the day you'd hope most folks would worry more about politicians screwing the public than a lady of negotiable affection.

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