Former Governor Eliot Spitzer's bid for political redemption fell short on Tuesday night. Once heavily favored in the race for City Comptroller, the former sheriff of Wall Street was licking his wounds after his loss to Scott Stringer. NY1's Zack Fink filed the following report.
It was the political comeback that wasn't. Voters rejected former Governor Eliot Spitzer's bid for citywide office, five-and-a-half years after he resigned as governor over a prostitution scandal.
"For me, politics was never a profession. It was a cause," Spitzer said. "It was a calling to serve and to try to fight for those issues that we believed in."
Spitzer got into the race late, but early polls showed him with a commanding lead. However, as voters got to know his opponent, Scott Stringer, through a series of TV ads, Spitzer's support began to wane.
"I am proud to have run a campaign over the past nine weeks that many people thought was incapable to mount from the very beginning, when we had to gather petitions, but we did it in a way that made me proud to revisit the issues we fought for when I was attorney general and governor," Spitzer said.
Once a hard-charging governor promising to change Albany, Spitzer ended up alienating members of both parties before resigning in disgrace.
He stayed in the public eye, appearing on television, including on NY1 as a Wiseguy. When he announced his candidacy for city comptroller, it took the political world by surprise.
Spitzer's candidacy set up a stark contrast between someone who wanted to take on the system and a candidate who had the backing of the Democratic establishment. In the end, voters went with the candidate who was not by tainted scandal, marking the second ending of Spitzer's political career.