Tuesday, March 11, 2008

No Charges Against Spitzer, But Wingnut Calls For Resignation Or Impeachment

Republicans nationwide are calling for the resignation of New York Governor Eliot Spitzer [photo], following allegations of involvement with a high-priced prostitution ring. The story is generating international attention, even though no criminal charges have been laid.

And, according to the New York Times,
[New York State] Assemblyman James Tedisco, a Republican and the Assembly minority leader, said he would begin moving to have Mr. Spitzer impeached if the governor did not step down within 48 hours.
My, what double standards we keep.

When the offending party is an elephant, such as Arizona Congressman Rick Renzi, it doesn't matter whether he's been charged, indicted, arraigned, whatever ... We get explanations like this:
"There is a presumption of innocence in this country and it applies to congressmen. And Congressman Renzi is fully prepared to continue serving [sic] his [constitutents] while we fight for his rights in court. And there's plenty of rights to be fought for."
But when the offending party is a donkey, all that "presumption of innocence" stuff goes out the window. This is politics, after all; and post-democratic America, too; in other words: There are no rules. There is only power.

Larisa Alexandrovna has more at At-Largely. In "Remember the days when being linked to a straight, female, adult hooker was political suicide?" she mentions a few Republicans who have been caught doing much worse, but who have remained in office; she also mentions some of the sleaziest Republican sex scandals of recent times, all of which go way beyond this one.

Then, in "Spitzer's selective prosecution?", she looks at some of the disturbing indications that this case is personal and political rather than anything else.

Jane Hamsher asks some good questions at Fire Dog Lake, too. See "Some Questions About the Spitzer Incident".

As for me, I merely wish to express my confidence that this incident has nothing to do with the op/ed Spitzer published last month in the New York Times, in which he exposed the fact that the Bush administration had used its power to protect predatory mortgage lenders, over the objection of all 50 state Attorneys General.

I am also confident that it has nothing to do with any of the anti-corruption work he has done on behalf of the people of his state.

How can I be so confident? Because ruining somebody because of a truth he'd told -- or because of good work he had done -- would be dishonest.

That's why.

Now, if he had done something really trivial -- started a war of aggression, or several of them -- and an opposition politician had called for his resignation with the threat of impeachment, I might be singing a different tune. I might say "Aw, come on! This is meaningless; it's all political; they just don't like his attitude."

And then I could be the perfect wingnut.