Rep. Chris Lee: Craigslist Amateur


While high-minded sorts are tsk-tsking over what former representative Chris Lee's Craiglist flirtation means for the state of congressional marriages, Hypervocal's Slade Sohmer takes the New York millionaire to task for totally lacking any kind of game in his use of Craigslist personals. Sohmer writes:

Lee can't be proud of the mistakes he made within the sanctity of marriage, but he should be more ashamed by the following three errors:

1. He used his real name: If the first rule and second rule of Fight Club are both "You do not talk about Fight Club," then the first and second rules of Craigslist is "You're a dumb schmuck who deserves to get caught if you use your real name." Not as catchy, sure, but just as important. The only reason he's on Gawker now is because he didn't either employ a fake name like "Rusty Hardstein" or use a moniker like "" Christopher Lee may seem like a common name, until you realize that you're a sitting congressman, and that you probably rank higher in the Google search engine than some random college kid from Tulsa or a low-grade dentist from Texarkana.

2. The unprovoked shirtless pic: Despite the fact that for a 46-year-old man Lee's got every right to show off his ripped body, there are two major problems with his shirtless gambit. Firstly, it comes way too early in the e-mail conversation, so early that she even remarked out on it. If her original post called for body pics or cock shots, then it's excusable, but she clearly states "pic for pic only," which usually implies "show me your face and I'll show you mine."

More importantly, if you're going to send an enchanting temptress a shirtless photo over the Internet, don't do so wearing dress pants and a belt while semi-flexing your biceps. It sends mixed messages. There's only one man who could ever pull that off: Patrick Swayze, and he's gone (but not forgotten).

It's also, in my experience, quite difficult to be "relaxing at home," as he says along with the pic, in dress pants and a belt. It screams desperate liar.

3. He is a lobbyist in his fantasy: It's not like she says explicitly that she's looking for a long-term relationship -- in fact, she says she just wants a man who doesn't look like a toad. But according to Gallup's annual Honesty and Ethics survey published in December 2010, lobbyists are found to possess the lowest amount honesty and ethical standards of ANY profession (well, tied at 7% with car salesman). Maybe this lass was just looking for a quick romp, therefore maybe the wealth and power of a lobbyist would come in handy, but he certainly seemed like he was in it for the long haul, a slow play involving casual talk about past dates and divorce. Why would you try to pass yourself off as a man interested in a date when most people think your (fake) job means you're a dishonest, unethical dickbag? You could be rich and powerful without being a sleazeball -- heck, even lawyers and business executives rank higher than lobbyists for honesty and ethics in the hearts and minds of most Americans (ironically, even members of Congress rank higher than lobbyists).

C'mon, Congressman. If this kind of amateur-hour effort is indicative of your legislative smarts, it's a good thing you're walking away from a job that requires some forethought.

The full story can be read at HyperVocal.

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Garance Franke-Ruta is a former senior editor covering national politics at The Atlantic.

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