Posted March 26, 2008 – With New Yorkers still swimming in an ocean of slime – filled with high-priced prostitutes, out-of-wedlock paramours and financial impropriety – the Big Apple’s new governor added to the nastiness Monday with a new revelation about his earlier affair with dope.
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Gov. David Paterson, just a week into the state’s top gig after replacing Eliot Spitzer, who quit over a seamy prostitution scandal, admitted to dabbling with marijuana and cocaine during the 1970s.
"I'd say I was about 22 to 23. I tried it a few times, yes," said Paterson, now 53, in his latest display of honesty about his sorted past.
Ironically, when it became clear that Paterson, who is blind, would become only the third African American in the nation’s history to hold the rank of governor the most refreshing story for many was his Clorox-clean image as one of the few politicians who could restore integrity and respect to the office after the tawdry tales of Spitzer’s philandering ways.
That hope, however, was short-lived.
It only took a day for the public to learn that both the governor and his wife had had lovers on the side during an estranged period in their marriage. Then we learned that Paterson had had many lovers … and that some of those lovers had been state employees … and that he had used campaign funds for cozy hotel rooms and $5,000 worth of flowers from 1-800-FLOWERS.
"I feel badly about the situation, but I don't feel badly about speaking out about it. I thought that's what the public asked elected officials to do," he told a New York TV station. "I have tried to be open and transparent in the way that the public would ask.”
Did Paterson do the right thing by sharing his indiscretions? Click "Discuss Now" to post your comments.