The Post-Standard by Gloria Wright - February 5, 2010
The N.Y. Daily News and New York Magazine report today that the blogosphere is buzzing with rumors that the New York Times will soon publish a scandalous exposé on the personal life of New York Gov. David Paterson. The Daily News' Elizabeth Benjamin says in her Daily Politics report that the alleged blockbuster story "will be far worse than his acknowledged extramarital affair with a former state employee."
More on the Paterson rumors
Rumors abound about Paterson-scandal Exposé [New York Magazine]
For about two weeks now, Albany has been buzzing that the New York Times was preparing a blockbuster scandal exposé about Governor Paterson, one that could seriously affect his chances for reelection. At first the rumors had it that the piece would be run last Sunday. When that day came and went, there was a lull until yesterday, when they again reached a fever pitch. The gossip fires had also been stoked by a "Page Six" report over the weekend in which the Post recounted an unpleasant alleged encounter in the governor's mansion. "At one point [a state trooper] opened the door to an electrical closet/utility room that isn't normally used," a source told columnist Fred Dicker. "The trooper opened the door and the first thing he saw was the governor and a woman inside and the two of them snuggling together, embracing. There was nothing more than that, snuggling, and they had their clothes on."
The Daily News, coincidentally, had just run a story claiming that trooper presence in the mansion had recently been reduced "after a number of incidents in which the governor and First Lady Michelle Paige Paterson were 'startled' by troopers." When State Police Superintendent Harry Corbitt wrote a letter to the Post editors denying these stories, Daily News Albany chronicler Elizabeth Benjamin saw fit to mention the exposé rumors publicly for the first time. At around the same time, Observer media reporter John Koblin tweeted that he'd been hearing the same buzz. "Anyone hearing about NYT bombshell on Paterson?" he asked. "Heard big, damanging story comin. [sic] been working for weeks, but still not published yet."
The Times hasn't run anything yet, but we hear they are definitely coming up with something big about the Paterson administration. A spokeswoman had no comment, but regardless, if these rumors continue to gain speed online or even in print, it would seem damage is already being done to Paterson. Aspiring gubernatorial candidate Andrew Cuomo, for example, can't be too chagrined about a Paterson scandal story that, like Cuomo himself, is gaining momentum by running just under the surface.
"Bombshell" to explode Governor Paterson? [Gothamist]
The rumor mill is churning right now about a "big, damaging" New York Times "bombshell" story that supposedly features some ruinous dirt about the personal life of Governor David Paterson. Elizabeth Benjamin at the Daily News hears it "will be far worse than his acknowledged extramarital affair with a former state employee." Remember when you first heard about Eliot Spitzer's involvement with prostitutes, and everyone was like, "Okay, so who the hell is David Paterson?" Well, let's get to know current Lieutenant Governor Richard Ravitch! (We would link to his official New York State website, but, heh, that doesn't even exist.) You may recall that he is old and white and not blind, and was sworn in at Peter Luger's in Brooklyn. The Wikipedia tells us his family history in New York dates back to the 19th century, he graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Columbia, and went on to Yale Law School. Ravitch was also the third generation to take over his family's construction company, and he's credited with building the first integrated housing projects in Washington, D.C. He ran the MTA from 1979 through 1983 (declining a salary), and Mayor Ed Koch once called him a "Renaissance man." It's unclear what role hookers, cocaine, and extra-marital sex play in his past, but let's not get ahead of ourselves here.
The story everybody’s talking about (but no one’s read) [Albany Times Union]
No one, that is, except for reporters, editors and lawyers at the New York Times, which has according to an avalanche of first-, second- and third-hand accounts been working on a piece about Gov. David Paterson that, depending on who you talk to, could prove to be anything from mildly embarrassing to politically apocalyptic. The last few weeks have brought two major eruptions of rumors concerning Paterson’s private life: reports of nuzzling at a New Jersey restaurant and being caught in semi-flagrante in a utility closet in the Governor’s Mansion — stories that Paterson and his press office have vehemently denied. According to sources who have actually been interviewed for the Times’ story, its central narrative is the role played by members of Paterson’s inner circle in his personal and political activities. Rumors about a possibly publication date for the story have ranged from Monday to today; the latest suggests Sunday, but it’s hard to believe that the Times would hold the story much longer when knowledge that it’s pending has put every other reporter in the Capitol and elsewhere on the scent. Possible reasons for delay include editorial fine-tuning and thorough legal review. Someday, a sociologist might be able to use an analysis of the rumors currently flying around the Capitol as their dissertation topic. Information from credible sources slowly becomes wilder as it spreads out. Sometimes, the chain of information is circular: A calls B, who calls C; then C calls A, who discovers that the story has changed markedly on its journey. The Times, of course, won a Pulitzer for breaking the story of Eliot Spitzer’s transgressions. Living in anxiety that the paper could be on the verge of dropping something of similar impact won’t make for a happy weekend at the Governor’s Mansion.
New York Times sitting on Paterson swinging bombshell? [Gawker]
The Observer's John Koblin heard the New York Times is supposedly working on a major story on our wacky governor. The guy's admitted to drugs and adultery, what else could there be? (We're all ears!) Update: More sex, looks like. The New York Daily News' Liz Benjamin points to a weird letter to the editor of the Post from the State Superintendent, who flatly denies the recent Page Six story on Paterson dining (and nuzzling) with a lady who is not his wife. And supposedly the bombshell story will make the earlier adultery revelations look tame in comparison. For what it's worth, there is a rumor that the governor and his wife are swingers. And if that is what the Times is working on, all we can say is we look forward to reading them attempt to describe the practice in the house style.