"He's Weighing It"

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That's what a source told the New York Post about Eliot Spitzer--that he's considering a return to electoral politics next year--while others said he's not, and Spitzer himself declined to comment. Here at Atlantic Politics, Marc recently wondered if a redemption might be possible for Spitzer and concluded that, like Ted Kennedy's immersion in the business of the Senate after Chappaquiddick and his failed presidential run, Spitzer's redemption would have to be one of public works--not just helping people forget about the prostitution.

That touches on a big problem Spitzer would likely face, were he to attempt a run at state comptroller or a primary challenge to Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) next year (which the Post hints at, and which both sound like a stretch): people would think he's being selfish.

"He loves to be in the limelight," one source close to Spitzer told the Post. "But he knows it can't happen." If that's why he does it--because he's by nature a public guy who likes the spotlight and feels at home, more effective, whatever when he's in it--people probably won't like it. Spitzer told Vanity Fair this summer that he wouldn't want to put his family through the pain of an election; if he ran for something, it would probably have to be with their full blessing.

It's a separate issue from the scandal. People may forgive the scandal completely, and still not buy the return. That said, the Post's photo of Spitzer and his wife laughing at a Yankees game probably brought him closer to public acceptance than anything else.

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Chris Good is a political reporter for ABC News. He was previously an associate editor at The Atlantic and a reporter for The Hill.

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