Paterson Admits To Extra-Marital Affair


One day after taking the oath of office, Gov. David Paterson admitted to having extra-marital affairs with several women years ago, including one who was is still on the state payroll.

The shocking admission Tuesday came less than 24 hours after he replaced Gov. Eliot Spitzer, who resigned after he was linked to being a participant to a prostitution ring.

It’s the latest extraordinary turn in a roller-coaster week for state politics.

“I betrayed a commitment to my wife several years ago. I do not feel I betrayed my commitment to the citizens of New York state,” Paterson told reporters at a news conference.

“I haven’t broken any laws. I don’t think I violated my oath of office.

“I saw this as a private matter, but both of us have committed acts of infidelity.”

Aides said that one of the women is still on the state payroll, working in the governor’s office. But he said he never had an affair with aide who worked directly for him.


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  1. You should correct that headline to say “affairs,” plural.

    So David Paterson now admits to several affairs, including one with a state employee. That could get him fired in the private sector. New York remains a cesspool.

    Paterson shows himself to another one, like Spitzer, who is not fit to be governor. Not one affair mind you, several, including at least one with a state employee. Welcome to Albany. And they wonder why people think most politicians there and almost everywhere else are sleazy? How about this answer: It is because they ARE sleazy.

  2. the consultant on

    I totally disagree…this particular affair was a personal
    matter between david and his wife…many people have
    rough patches many people are not faithful..and in this
    case it is not the public’s business..they in fact
    reconciled…We should not be the judges of his
    marital vows…it is between him his wife and his
    god…as for having an affair with a state employee
    it is not criminal and it is not our business either
    unless he sexually harassed her which is apparently
    not the case…Patterson like many others in office
    is not disqualified because he had a rocky marriage
    and did his wife…we need to get off
    the business of prying into the private lives of
    those we elect…and into the business of running the

  3. the consultant on

    by the way if that were the litmus test for holding
    public office we would very limited in the people we could

  4. Good. We need litmus tests. These “honorable” people dictate and decide our fates. Go sell Chevys if you want to not be held to a reasonable standard of morality and ethics. If someone will steal FOR you, he will steal FROM you. A man or a woman who cheats on his family will certainly have little compunction to be honest with YOU if he can find personal benefit in not doing so.

  5. the consultant on

    this is not a “cheating situation”…the marriage was
    basically on the rocks…BOTH parties were having affairs
    with the expectation they would not stay married..cheating
    is when one partner feigns fidelity and goes behind the
    back of the other..if two people are separated it is not
    the same thing

  6. Actually, Consultant as a lawyer you should know under New York law that you pledge sexual exclusivity to your partner during the course of the marriage. They were not separated pursuant to a separation degree or validly executed separation agreement. Adultery was committed. Hence, cheating.

    That said, I don’t think it is anyone’s business but I think it is the governor’s fault that this is being discussed as he brought it up.

  7. the consultant on

    he did not bring it up…reporters had the information
    and he spoke frankly to cut it off at the pass

  8. Well, consultant, since they cheated on one another, I suppose your judgement is that everything cancels everything else out. What about the children? And, speaking of children, when one hits another over the head with a Tonka truck, doesn’t he always plead: “He did it first!” I don’t expect my governor to be Plato or St. John of the Cross, but I do expect him to be something more than a 90th Street motel slimeball.

  9. Stupidity on Display on

    Ed – Wahoo –
    There is a personal life, and a public life. What you do in your private life…how you manage your money, how you handle alcohol, how you behave amongst your friends and family, is only a matter of public attention if it affects your public behavior.

    You sit as the Morality Police and rule out anyone who has ever had an affair – of which you know NONE of the circumstances, and you would be ruling out great people who led brilliantly.

    Judge public officials by their public actions, and not by your own standards. Otherwise, no one who has committed adultery should write a newspaper story (can’t count on them to tell the truth) or operate a grocery store (might cheat you in change) or drive a taxicab or serve as a salesman, or any of a hundred myriad other jobs.

    You want perfection – go find it in a petrie dish. Human beings do wrong and stupid and selfish things from time to time. But that does not make them wrong and stupid or selfish in everything, unless it is a pattern of behavior.

    Judge not, lest ye be judged. Let God judge all these men and women on their morality. In the meantime, give me people who work hard and perform well in public.

    Let’s hope Ed and Wahoop, since you dish out many cynical and negative opinions about what politicians do wrong, that you are both perfect. No speeding tickets (reckless); no mistakes on your taxes (cheaters); didn’t lose your temper in a bar (hothead); etc.

  10. Paterson’s very public action yesterday was to admit he had several affairs, including one with a state employee.

    Paterson himself made all this public, and he made it the public’s business. He said rumors were going around, and that he was afraid of blackmail. Blackmail is always possible when public officials engage in what Paterson did. That also is the public’s business because Paterson and other politicians can be coerced into voting certain ways, etc. when they do what Paterson did.

    If Paterson was a private citizen, this would be his business only, and his wife’s. But that is not the case.

  11. the consultant on

    Patterson did not choose to make this the public’s
    business..a reporter had information and was asking
    questions of one of his lady friends…He publicly
    chose to address the issue to avoid any possibility
    that it could be used in any way to coerce him either
    for or against legislation or for any other reason
    Why do you insist on moral purity…are you unaware
    of the fact that marriages have their problems…if
    mr patterson were single would you be so judgmental
    If he were legally separated would you take the
    same position…Paying for it in cash as elliot did
    was not the problem was hiding it through
    structuring and using a professional prostitution was his hypocracy in passing a law to punish
    johns while simultaneously he was himself a john.
    The public will judge david patterson…and so far
    he is getting thumbs up..thats called community is what we as a social nation operate
    under not the moral code of any particular person
    or religion..for that matter

  12. A reporter had information? From what I’m told, all this was long and widely known from Albany to 125th and Lenox. Hopefully it’s not going to keep him from governing astutely, but he has become something of a laughing stock in Albany. The pols up there will stop snickering only when their own “indiscretions” become public. We’re unfortunately living in an age when a perpetrator of any immorality (or Class B Misdemeanor) says in exculpation: “Well, my wife did it too, and at least I didn’t kill anyone.” The fact that any of our leaders’ unethical actions take place while attempting to quietly skulk around in shadows and dark hallways tells me that they know their behavior is wrong and they know, further, that their boss (the public) will not appreciate it. If we let them away with it with only a nod and a smile, we’re inviting them to further, more serious chicanery.