Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Spitzer Makes The Right Choice

Although the resignation letter has not been officially submitted, the cards are down from New York's Governor and his tenure is going to be over today. Lieutenant Governor Paterson will be sworn in this afternoon sworn in on Monday but is technically Acting Governor now and power will be transferred to the Empire State's first African-American Governor out of 55 and only 4th in the country. This will be the sad ending for a once-rising star in the Democratic party.


There has been no set timetable for an announcement and an official letter of resignation has not been handed down, but both were expected at any moment.

A state official told the Associated Press that the resignation will be effective Monday.

The governor hoped to use the resignation as a bargaining chip with federal prosecutors to avoid jail time, insiders say, following his alleged involvement in a high-profile prositution ring.

"I think his career is politically at an end," noted criminal defense attorney Ronald Fischetti told CBS 2 HD.

Politically, yes, he is finished. This is not a simple prostitution case, not even close. What Spitzer did and the way he did it is contrary to everything that he said he stood for. He prosecuted and decried those that he caught doing what he was doing himself, even when he was Attorney General he decided to break the law he swore to uphold.

You know I got an email from one of my progressive listservs and it called on supporters to sign a petition to the Governor to hang in there and that this was all the fault of the Bush Administration. Well the Bush Administration is responsible for many, many, many things that have gone wrong in America over the last several years, but guys, this just isn't one of them. What we need to do now as progressives, and as progressives in New York is to rally around our new Governor and help him achieve the things that Eliot Spitzer promised to us when he ran in 2006. Like Mr. Spitzer said, in the long run its about ideas, not people.

Update: And he says it well this morning too:

In the past few days, I've begun to atone for my private failings with my wife Silda, my children, and my entire family. The remorse I feel will always be with me. Words cannot describe how grateful I am for the love and compassion they have shown me.

From those to whom much is given, much is expected. I have been given much: the love of my family, the faith and trust of the people of New York, and the chance to lead the state. I am deeply sorry that I did not live up to what was expected of me. To every New Yorker and to all those who believed in what I tried to stand for, I sincerely apologize. I look at my time as Governor with a sense of what might have been, but I also know that as a public servant I, and the remarkable people with whom I worked, have accomplished a great deal. There is much more to be done, and I cannot allow my private failings to disrupt the people’s work.

Over the course of my public life I have insisted – I believe correctly – that people, regardless of their position or power take responsibility for their conduct. I can and will ask no less of myself. For this reason I am resigning from the office of governor. At Lieutenant Governor Patterson’s request, the resignation will be effective Monday, March 17, a date that he believes will permit an orderly transition. I go forward with the belief, as others have said, that as human beings, our greatest glory consists not in never falling but in rising every time we fall.

As I leave public life I will first do what I need to do to help and heal myself and my family. Then I will try once again, outside of politics, to serve the common good and to move toward the ideals and solutions which I believe can build a future of hope and opportunity for us and for our children. I hope all of New York will join my prayers for my friend David Paterson as he embarks on his new mission. And I thank the public once again for the privilege of service. Thank you very much.