Ben Stein deeply disturbed by Spitzer investigation
"Like every other American, I was stunned by the fall of Eliot Spitzer," opens Nixon speechwriter, notable Brat Pack-era cinema actor, comedian, lawyer and former game show host Ben Stein.
Stein is troubled by what he calls the actions of a few "nosy civil servants" using evidence gained from wiretaps to unravel the career of the outgoing New York Governor, and undo a majority vote by the people of New York.
"Something sinister is happening," he says, "and it scares me."
"Men hire prostitutes by the thousands," Stein continues, "maybe tens of thousands, every day. They also bring women across state lines for sex every day.
"The punishment for the men who hire hookers is usually nil, or at most, a small fine, close to what you'd get for a traffic ticket."
Spitzer, on the other hand, was humiliated and run out of office as punishment, with Stein protesting a small number of federal officials having what he essentially calls veto power over the electoral process. Spitzer, he continues, has been stripped of his career for something picked up on a wiretap that was not a high crime like terrorism or treason.
"Having elected officials kicked out of office by appointed officials is a very dicey proposition," argues Stein.
He concludes: "Elections are a lot more important than call girls."
Stein's entire monologue, as aired on CBS's Sunday Morning on March 16, 2008, is available to view below.