A little disgrace never hurt anyone, especially in New York City, where the scandal-plagued comeback kids in the civic elections are leading over their more straitlaced opponents. The latest numbers have Anthony Weiner and Eliot Spitzer both sitting pretty--which is to say, they're on top.
In the latest Quinnipiac poll, former congressman Weiner is ahead of New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, his biggest competition, by 25 to 22 percent in the race for mayor. And former governor Eliot Spitzer is beating Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer by 48 percent to 33 percent in the race for city comptroller. The fallen golden boys don't look quite so tainted now.
What Spitzer and Weiner have in common over their opponents is an early and aggressive marketing campaign via sex scandal. Being bad is good in New York, for better or for worse. People may know Weiner because of his sexually explicit-sexting scandal or Spitzer because of his dalliances with ladies of the night, but it's working for the two candidates. Other than those two, polled citizens were practically indifferent to every other choice. When pollsters were asked to pass a favorable or unfavorable opinion about the candidates, Weiner and Spitzer are the only two whose "haven't heard enough" scores came in under 20 percent. No one knows who the other guys are.