It's an issue of responsibility.
There would be enough to write about here in Iowa this week with the trip of Senator Kerry’s shipmate on Friday and the President on Saturday. By the way, I love living in a battleground state. But Iowa is going to get bumped to another time with the announcement of Governor James McGreevey’s (D-NJ) resignation.
There will be much spin on this issue but I want to make it clear. This is not a gay issue. Yes, you heard it right. If the guv was/is gay, so what? The issue is, from earliest accounts, that McGreevey had an unqualified man hired by the state government and had him moved from position to position when the appropriate department realized he wasn’t qualified. In the midst of all of that inappropriate hiring and transferring, the Governor is playing hoochie-koochie with the unqualified employee. Now whether or not McGreevey had Golan Cipel first hired because Cipel was his lover on the side or not, we will have to wait to find out. I’m sure that will come out soon.
We will probably never know if McGreevey would have announced all of this had there not be a sexual harassment lawsuit filed by Cipel against the governor. We probably will never know if McGreevey would have resigned if Cipel had not (allegedly) requested $5 million of extortion money to keep quiet.
I say this is not a gay issue because few politicians in this age would resign if their only offense is that their sexual activity is offensive to some. There are thousands of office holders in this country who are openly gay or lesbian. Sexual orientation or the announcement of your personal orientation, in the mind of most Americans, is not grounds for resignation. McGreevey knows that. He is using the homosexual issue as a cover up for arranging state government positions as payment for sexual favors or just getting a job for a lover. Gay or straight, the act of getting a job for a lover or family member when they are not qualified for the position, is wrong. Period.
Using the issue of sexual orientation to cover your ass(ets) is appalling to me. If you choose to participate in a behavior, any behavior, you better be a big enough person to take responsibility for your actions. McGreevey is not shooting straight with the citizens of New Jersey and he sure is not taking responsibility. Personally, I think he is trying to delay the talk of the harassment suit by opening another can of worms for one reason. There is an upcoming deadline for a call for the special election for his position. Or maybe he is holding on until mid November with the idea of a greater pension from the state. I wonder if anyone has checked out that angle.
By the way, have I said this is not a gay issue? Oh, good. This is not just a cover-up of an affair. This is an attempt to cover-up inappropriate influence used to hire someone and the payoff and possible sexual harassment charges. The charges are serious enough regardless the gender of folks involved.
There is a positive thing that continues to come out this week and that is whether left or right, gay or straight, McGreevey failed in his responsibility as governor. The more folks I see interviewed, the more I see the issue of the being gay minimized in the story. This is not a gay issue.
Once again, the person or persons that I hurt for are the governor’s wife and daughters. The “stand by your man” attitude may not last long. And then McGreevey will lose his position, his prestige and one family who stood beside him in many of the tough times. I will also say that this practice of dragging the wife up in front of the world when the husband is fooling around on the side needs to end. It is sickening. Whether your name is Bill Clinton, Kobe Bryant, Jim McGreevey, or Joe Schmoe; it is sickening. Come on ladies, you deserve better.
Sorry, governor, you blew it. Just wish you were a stand up kind of guy. Especially now.