New York's Spitzer, once a target, makes appearance on late-night comedy

NEW YORK Fri Jul 12, 2013 11:36pm EDT

Former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer displays to the media, signatures which he delivered to the board of elections office, in New York July 11, 2013. REUTERS/Eric Thayer

Former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer displays to the media, signatures which he delivered to the board of elections office, in New York July 11, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Eric Thayer

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NEW YORK (Reuters) - Eliot Spitzer, the former New York governor who is now attempting a political resurrection, is willing to talk about the prostitution scandal that forced him to resign, but perhaps not crack a joke about it.

Spitzer, who announced on Sunday he would run for New York City comptroller, traveled to California on Friday to appear on "The Tonight Show" with Jay Leno, one of many TV comedians who has steadily made him the butt of jokes in the five years since the scandal.

When Leno asked how Spitzer could have been "this stupid," the former governor offered a somewhat serious defense: "Hubris is terminal," according to video clips released ahead of the show's broadcast on Friday night.

"People who fall prey to hubris, end up falling themselves," Spitzer said. "And that I think is something to which people in government are susceptible to. Those who feel they are somehow increasingly important to power."

Five years ago, just over a year into Spitzer's first term as governor, he was identified as "Client No. 9" in a high-end prostitution ring. He resigned almost immediately.

The image of his visibly shaken wife, Silda Spitzer, standing at his side, became part of the inspiration for the hit TV show, "The Good Wife." And Spitzer, who had been know as the "Sheriff of Wall Street" during two terms as New York attorney general, was promptly dubbed the "Love Guv."

As for Spitzer's Democratic rival, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, his campaign criticized Spitzer for "skipping town."

"Sadly for Jay Leno, Eliot Spitzer's resignation from office was no laughing matter," Stringer's spokeswoman, Audrey Gelman, said in a statement.

(Reporting by Edith Honan; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)

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Comments (2)
Des3Maisons wrote:
Eliot Spitzer’s sex life is of no interest to me. He is a proven advocate for the people he represents, unlike most of our politicians who are owned by Corporate America and enrich themselves, the rich and corporations at the expense of the poor and middle class. I’d vote for Eliot Spitzer in a heartbeat.

Jul 13, 2013 9:51am EDT  --  Report as abuse
mlnanagalama wrote:
Spitzer, please stop talking. Even my 12yr old who clowns around as the lawyer for her 15yr old sister would tell you to stop talking. We already know too much about what you did so you do not need to defend it. You need a new PR person on your team.

Jul 13, 2013 6:11pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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