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Elliot Spitzer, redux

Posted by Andrew J. Barovick | Nov 26, 2008 | 0 Comments

Conspiracy theorists, rejoice!  For in today's NY Times , we learn from Danny Hakim that a congressional committee is investigating the motives behind U.S. Attorney Michael J. Garcia's investigation into Spitzer's romp with up-and-coming rap artist/whore Ashley Dupree.

The idea here is that Spitzer came down hard on Wall Street during his tenure as New York's Attorney General, and now is the federal government's pay back time.  Credit is due to Mr. Hakim, who notes early in his article that the sources of the concerns regarding Spitzer's having been targeted “for political purposes” are left wing blogs. 

My guess is that Spitzer has more than “left wing blogs” working for him if this idea has gained enough traction to prompt a congressional investigation.  And that's what was so maddening about his being cleared by U.S. Attorney Garcia in the first place.  Money, power and politics triumphed over justice yet again.

The fact is, the public, and the politicians (who are generally not known for possessing functioning moral compasses) were justifiably outraged not because Spitzer was cavorting with a hooker, but because of the utter hyprocrisy of it all.  After all, this was the man who had no use for the social conventions that the rest of use with one another, who rode into Albany on a white horse declaring, often in unusually coarse language, that there was a new sheriff in town, and he was going to clean things up!  He ruined lives, reputations and entire companies in the process, but because of the credibility he had earned while Attorney General, his mission remained palatable to the thinking public.

In the meantime, it turned out that he failed to hold himself to the same high standards as everyone else.  And yet he continued to act and speak as if her were a crusader for justice, reform and integrity.  And he got sloppy with his bookkeeping.  And so began his downfall. 

So when Mr. Hakim quotes politicians in today's Times article saying things such as “It raises questions in my mind that he [Spitzer] may have been targeted for political purposes,” keep that grain of salt very handy.  Look for evidence to back up such speculation.  And don't feel sorry for Mr. Spitzer.   Because frankly, he has not yet gotten what he deserves.

About the Author

Andrew J. Barovick

Mr. Barovick is a graduate of Columbia College and Cardozo School of Law. He began his legal career at the Queens District Attorney’s Office, where he tried over 20 felonies to verdict, and argued an equal number of appeals before the Appellate Division, Second Department, the New York Court of Appeals and the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.


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