Did anyone really think that Jim McGreevey's manipulative and cynical declaration "I am a gay American!" and his subsequent resignation were the end of it? Oh, how I wish it had been! This latest revelation of hetero-homo three-ways is definitely TMI.
Leaving aside for a moment the people of New Jersey who voted for Jim McGreevey, there is really only one true victim in this debacle. If I were the judge overseeing the McGreevey child custody battle, now is the time I'd be thinking about turning over their kid to a third party. I'm glad I'm not the judge.
From the start it was clear that Jim McGreevey didn't resign from office simply because he was a gay American. We've made so much progress in a few short decades that tumbling out of the closet is no longer a resigning offense for an elected official. Nor is getting caught tap-dancing in a men's rest room. Nor, did I think, was McGreevey's bone-headed decision to hire his Israeli boyfriend to head up the state's security apparatus.
So since that fateful press conference where McGreevey used his declaration of sexual orientation to deflect questions the press should have been asking, I've wondered what it was that McGreevey was resigning over. Turns out it was a marital aide. And not the kind you swallow in pill form.
There's plenty that many of us would prefer never to have to answer for in public. But when you run for office you have to figure that whatever you do--or have done--is open to public scrutiny. I don't think politicians should have to answer every question about their private lives, but if you're gay, closeted, and having three-ways with your wife and a young aide, why would you run for public office? And once partially exposed, why would you pretend to be a victim when the odds are that the truth will one day come out?
The only upside to this sorry affair is that it's taken my mind off the deadlocked democratic nomination, the Spitzer mess, and the imploding economy. I guess I should thank the McGreeveys for that.