It sucks to be Scott Stringer. The Manhattan borough president thought he could win the New York City mayor’s race, but early polls showed him at the back of the pack.
So he did what any realistic pol would do — he dropped down the food chain to run for comptroller. When others quit, Stringer faced no serious primary opponent and a likely cakewalk in the general election.
Then he got steamrolled. It started last Sunday night when news broke that mad dog Eliot Spitzer was jumping into the race. A week later, Spitzer’s decision is Stringer’s nightmare.
A snap poll showed Client No. 9 with a 9-point lead among Democrats. Then came the death of Stringer’s plan to try to knock Spitzer off the ballot.
Facing a hurdle of getting 3,750 petition signatures in four days, Spitzer pulled out his fat wallet and lined up enough workers to get 27,000 signatures. The odds are tiny that fewer than 3,750 were valid, so Stringer decided not to challenge them.
His sudden underdog status throws open a window on modern morality. The affable Stringer and his wife recently celebrated the birth of their second child, while Spitzer is notorious for his arrogance and getting caught patronizing prostitutes. Whether he is a changed man and whether he and his wife still share a bed is unclear.
Throw in Anthony Weiner’s decent shot at being the Democratic nominee for mayor despite his own sex scandal, and the lesson is clear: Sex sells, even in politics.
Voters will have the final say, of course, but the early support for Weiner and Spitzer proves it’s not always good to get the government we deserve.
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Michael Goodwin is a Fox News contributor and New York Post columnist.