Monday, 8 February 2010

What's up, Governor?

It's a sad fact that politicians and scandal go together like Tom Cruise and damaged sofa cushions. Judging by the state of affairs (pun possibly intended) in New York, those associations aren't likely to end any time soon.

New York governor David Paterson is currently the target of a smear campaign involving "a variety of unproven accusations involving [his] personal conduct." In fact, the rumors are so unproven, they haven't even been articulated yet.

Apparently, character assassination has become so easy that these days you don't need a shooter or a smoking gun. In fact, you don't even need to take aim. Just plant the rumor that there may be a threat and let the internet take care of the rest.

All it took for Paterson's troubles to begin was a handful of bloggers speculating that the New York Times was working on a story that would force him to resign. As Doug Muzzio, politics professor at New York City's Baruch College, said in an interview: "I've never seen the rumor of a story becoming the story as this one has."

But the damage has been done, and now Paterson's political opponents are ready to strike. Leading the charge is former Nixon, Reagan and Bush advisor Roger Stone, who has lined up a most surprising alternative candidate.

Former 'Manhattan Madam' Kristin Davis (no, not that one) has put herself forward as a Libertarian candidate, and believes she has a chance of being elected since she 'has nothing to hide'. Having originally found notoriety by helping to unseat Paterson's prostitute-patronising predecessor Eliot Spitzer, Davis plans to run on a reform agenda.

A report in the New York Daily News claims that Davis "laid out her credentials...on the lower East Side" - a trick I'm sure many a man has paid to see. But if you're thinking that Stone is using her as part of a cynical publicity campaign, you couldn't be more wrong: "Kristin knows lots of Penthouse Pets. We'll get four, make them notary publics and have them, suitably attired, collecting signatures at Grand Central Station during rush hour." You stay classy New York.

On the upside (she's probably done that too), it makes a change to see a whore wanting to enter the world of politics, rather than the other way round.

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