THE COMEBACK MEN

Has the road to political redemption gotten shorter? Here’s a look

Published:July 30, 2013 5:34 am

ANTHONY WEINER

In June 2011,then Democrat Congressman from New York City,Anthony Weiner “accidentally” tweeted racy photos of himself on Twitter. The hapless Weiner admitted to having “inappropriate” relations with various women and resigned. Cut to July 2013 and newer and racier texts emerged,of him,disguised as ‘Carlos Danger’,propositioning women on the Internet; all this while declaring that he was running for New York’s gubernatorial office. And he also got his wife,Huma Abedin,a powerful Washington adviser and confidante to Hillary Clinton,to publicly forgive him.

MARK SANFORD

Former South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford,who quit office on the back of a sex scandal,is eyeing a comeback. Sanford had disappeared for six days in 2009 while governor. At first,Sanford’s office issued a statement that he was hiking the Appalachian Trail. But it soon came to light that he was in Argentina visiting his mistress. Wife Jenny Sanford divorced him soon after,only to return to his side as he launched a bid for a Congressional berth in 2013. But his comeback is not as smooth as it seems. Only days earlier,Sanford was late for a House vote,arriving in a sweaty T-shirt and gym shorts. Republicans were heard sneering at Sanford,‘Where have you been? Hiking?’

ELIOT SPITZER

Former New York governor Eliot Spitzer recently announced a bid to return as the city’s comptroller. Spitzer had resigned in 2008 after it was revealed that he had spent thousands of dollars on prostitutes. Spitzer,who was dubbed ‘Love Guv’ by the city’s tabloids,has launched a petition campaign requiring 3,750 signatures to get into the September ballot. However,Spitzer,during his political exile,continued to enjoy attention—hosting not one but two different shows on CNN and Current TV. Running the campaign on his family’s personal fortune,pollsters opine that Spitzer has a better chance of a triumphant comeback than Weiner.

KRISTIN DAVIS

Ironically,Kristin Davis,an ex-madam who claims to have supplied former governor Eliot Spitzer with hookers,is now Spitzer’s opponent in the race for the New York City Comptroller’s office. ‘This is going to be the funnest campaign ever,’ said Davis,who spent three months in prison for running an escort service. Spitzer,however,never served any sentence. Davis,who is running as a Libertarian,described herself on her campaign website as ‘a feminist and entrepreneur who has the business experience to be an effective fiscal watchdog for the taxpayer.’ Unlike Spitzer,Davis’s candidacy is being seen as a bit of a joke.

SILVIO BERLUSCONI

In 2011,former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi was charged with paying for sex with minors and using his political office for cover-up. Berlusconi also reportedly hosted orgies called ‘bunga bunga’ parties. Despite being cloaked in a number of sexual scandals,Berlusconi served as prime minister till his resignation in November 2011. And in December 2012,Berlusconi announced that he wanted to run in the 2013 prime ministerial elections for the fifth time. In June 2013,he was found guilty of the charges and sentenced to seven years in jail and banned from public office for life. Berlusconi,however,is moving for an appeal.

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