Spitzer Gets A Happy Ending

Politics & Current Events

The feds have elected not to charge Elliot Spitzer and will close the money-laundering investigation that led to revelations that he was frequenting expensive prostitutes while serving as Governor of New York.

"After a thorough investigation, this office has uncovered no evidence of misuse of public or campaign funds," said U.S. attorney Michael J. Garcia.

"In addition we have determined that there is insufficient evidence to bring charges against Mr. Spitzer for any offense related to the withdraw of funds for, and his payment to, the Emperors' Club VIP."

That means they think it would be too hard to make a case that he was structuring transactions to avoid the $10,000 currency reporting requirement. That's not an unreasonable decision; I suspect his motive was to avoid revealing the transactions to the press and his wife, not to the IRS.

On the other hand, I think this woman has a point:

The convicted owner of a second prostitution service who says she provided women for Spitzer, Kristin Davis, was outraged at the decision. "It's completely unfair," she said.

"As governor he should be held to the highest standard," said Davis. "He went after numerous people for the same laws that he broke and they end up spending jail time and losing their life's savings."

If a government has made prostitution criminal and pursued the prostitutes and pimps and money-launderers, I think it is questionable public policy and questionable use of prosecutorial discretion to give the Johns a pass. This is especially true when the John is a wealthy government official who has made a career as a professional scold and has vigorously prosecuted prostitution cases. It's probably not the right case for the feds, but the locals ought to make Spitzer take the perp walk.

Last 5 posts by Ken White

5 Comments

5 Comments

  1. Andrew  •  Nov 6, 2008 @4:09 pm

    Kudos on the post title!

  2. Al  •  Nov 7, 2008 @10:19 am

    Ten bucks says he'll get a pass from the state as well, unless there's a partisan angle I'm missing. (And the title was indeed brilliant.)

  3. Derrick  •  Nov 10, 2008 @8:10 am

    I saw a paparazzi pic of Spitzer and wife shopping in NYC. It was very odd. Not the picture, but rather the fact that it was in US Weekly.

  4. Jag  •  Nov 10, 2008 @10:59 am

    Now that's a handy title. Nice work.

  5. E.A. Daniels  •  Nov 16, 2008 @7:32 am

    The thing that bothers me is that whenever I (or anyone) moves money over a few thousand dollars around in a manner that some bank clerk does not like a report is sent to the fed's. The government now knows if we have a girlfriend (or boyfreind) on the side, if we like to gamble, buy exotic things or any number of things that are none of their business. Also, we cannot posses cash in our homes, our vehicles or on our person. Money over a few thousand dollars is suspicious and consficated out of hand. If you have saved it over time you cannot prove its source and it is kept. Privacy is no longer a right and you are guilty until you prove otherwise.