When politicians get caught with their pants down it becomes a public scandal.  Today’s newspaper focuses on someone who has ‘gone public’ via a mailer claiming Mayor Kip Holden’s pants were caught down.  Supposedly Holden received a black eye and fat lip from an angry husband who caught Holden with his wife.  Holden denies the black eye came from another man and was due to a fall on carpet.  Why do I find that statement somewhat humorous? 

Mayor Holden is treading on potentially dangerous political ground as he has countered the mailer by going public himself and calling for a criminal investigation into the source of the mailer.  There is an old saying, “let sleeping dogs lie” which might have been a better approach during an election year.

It’s long been the talk of the Red Stick that Mayor Holden has been having a tryst with a white woman.  Mayor Kip Holden even spoke openly about adulterous stories during an interview with the BR Business Report.  At the time I scratched my head and thought he was surely committing political suicide and even blogged about it because I thought he needed new political consultants.  When Holden talks about breaking down the race barriers, I had no idea this was what he meant.

Politics 101:  Never, never, never let your opponent know your weaknesses, because your weakness then becomes your opponent’s strength.  

Honesty, integrity and honoring others is a part of the marital bond.  If you dishonor your marriage, then you have shown yourself unworthy of trust.  Voters seek those they can trust.  Pretty simple.

History repeats itself and gives us insight into how these things play out.  Take a look:

  • Democrat Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, formerly called the “most honest man in Detroit”, lost all respect of his own metro council when his marital discretions came to light as they recently called for his removal.  Kilpatrick, of course, denied the allegations, but found himself in the middle of a Whistleblower Trial resulting in an $8 million court award.  Key note:  Personal security detail not only costs taxpayers big bucks, it can bite you in the rear. 
  • Democrat Mayor Antonio Villarigosa, committed infidelity twice.  The first time his wife had just been diagnosed with cancer.  She left him and came back for more of the same.  Villarigosa claims that his personal life has no relevance on his political career.  Key note:  If you cannot be faithful to your spouse, how can you be faithful to the voters?
  • Democrat Mayor Gavin Newsom of San Francisco was drawn into the spotlight for his affinity for pretty women.  His wife left him and later he committed adultery with his campaign manager’s wife.  Newsom regained his goodwill in the community by seeking alcohol treatment and publicly admitting the error of his ways and for hurting his close friend.  Key note:  Honesty and asking for forgiveness publicly can work.  Just ask Bill Clinton!
  • Other mayoral sex scandals ended in sadder circumstances including Mayor Jim West, found to be a player in the Boy Scouts of America sex scandal, who was recalled.  He died 5 months later.  Key note:  Sexual indiscretions and indictments can result in death. 

Sexual indiscretions are a tough topic.  Even tougher are those who commit these acts and then live in denial.  The Red Stick is like a small town.  People talk.  We are living in the electronic age where email and cellular calls hawk the news before God hears about it. 

Bottom line is that whether the mailer is correct or not, even Holden openly talks about the buzz of his indiscretions to the media through interviews about his crossover appeal and calling for a criminal investigation. Remember the old saying “be careful what you ask for”?

Until next time,

Red Stick Republican