Ugh, stop us if you heard this one before. A very powerful politician is in some hot water because he got a little bit frisky with someone he shouldn’t have. Nope, this isn’t a recap of the late Clinton era. And it’s not a recap of the Eliot Spitzer scandal. Detroit’s own Kwame Kilpartrick is the center of this scandal. Long story short: Kilpatrick is the mayor of Detroit. By all accounts he’s doing a pretty good job. He worked closely with his former chief of staff Christine Beatty. And it was good. Then the rumors started.
Rumor had it that in 2002 & 2003, Kilpatrick and Beatty had an affair. This they denied, natch. Then two cops were fired for blowing the whistle on Kilpatrick using his security detail to cover the affair. Of course, they sued. And Kilpatrick and Beatty were asked to testify. They denied the affair; the burden of proof was on their side. And then the Detroit Free Press unearthed 14,000 texts between the two. Not a typo, 14,000. The subjects ran the gamut of business and pleasure. largely pleasure though… a sample exchange:
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"I'm madly in love with you," Kilpatrick wrote on Oct. 3, 2002.
"I hope you feel that way for a long time," Beatty replied. "In case you haven't noticed, I am madly in love with you, too!"
Pretty nice stuff. Unfortunately, they were both married at the time and using public funds to go on this tryst. It probably would have resulted in a ‘shame on you’ Clinton-style admonishment had the two fired cops not won an $8.4 million dollar lawsuit against Detroit. And the text cache uncovered some other stuff like the city footing the bill for Kilpatrick’s wife’s Lincoln Navigator. And someone is accusing them of covering up the shooting death of a stripper.
This scandal is to the Detroit Free Press what the first Gulf War was to CNN; their first, their last, their everything.
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Kilpatrick is fighting these charges as best he can but without public funds. And he should probably do all he can because he could get some serious jail time: 15 years for perjury and 5 for conspiracy. He probably tried to pull the old executive privilege card but didn’t realize that only the President gets that one.
And not to be outshone, new New York governor David Paterson admitted to smoking pot and snorting the yayo. Someone needs to tell him to not talk for a minute, maybe sit the next couple plays out. Though we do love his candor. Spitzer and Kilpatrick should get an apartment together in LA. That would make a good SNL sketch, Paterson could be their kooky neighbor that everyone loves for his honesty.