Spitzer Resigns


Eliot Spitzer has resigned effective next Monday. There’s not much to add, but let’s take a step back and reflect on the double standard at work here. Spitzer cheated on his wife and broke the law, but he hasn’t been charged with a crime. He is now out of office and endured intense pressure to resign in the two days it took him to make up his mind.

Larry Craig, on the other hand, pleaded guilty to a crime (disorderly conduct) and cheated on his wife. He is still in office. David Vitter, whose number appeared in the DC Madam’s phone logs, likely cheated on his wife and likely broke the law, but was never charged with a crime. He, too, is still in office.

So what’s the double standard? Governors vs. Senators? Jews vs. Gentiles? Democrats vs. Republicans? Or people with self-respect vs. people without?

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

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