Step aside Anthony Weiner and R.I.P. Silvio Berlusconi’s “bunga bunga” debacle. Dominique Strauss-Kahn, former head of the International Monetary Fund is the latest leader to join the political sex scandal parade.
Authorities have charged Strauss-Kahn with “aggravated procurement in an organized gang,” informally defined as pimping. The “Carlton Affair,” as the scandal has been dubbed after the hotel in France where sex parties and prostitution are said to have run rampant, may very well land Strauss-Kahn in prison for 10 years, or see him pay a fine of $2 million.
Strauss-Kahn previously faced charges of sexual assault and attempted rape in New York brought by a hotel maid, though the charges were eventually dismissed in 2011. At one point, Strauss-Kahn aspired to the presidency of France.
Weiner, on the other hand, hasn’t allowedhis sexual forays to get him down. There’s almost something admirable in his tenacity in the face of disgrace. The same could be said of Italy's scandal-ridden politician, Silvio Berlusconi
Former Prime Minister Berlusconi was recently sentenced to seven years in prison for engaging in sexual activity with a minor and using his political power to hide the scandal. Despite all of this, his desire to remain in politics remains unwavering,much to the frustration of the Italian public.
So,why is it that politicians keep landing themselves in scandalous sexcapades, given that we live in a surveillance society brought about by the 24/7 nature of social media? Do they overestimate the powers that their positions grant them? As English writer and politician Lord Acton once said, “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”
What are the chances that voters will forgive the politicians who engaged in the most recent trifecta of political sex scandals? It's worth noting that former President Bill Clinton’s approval ratings have remained favorable long after the Monica Lewinsky affair that nearly removed him from office.
While the case can be made that behavior in the bedroom doesn't correlate to job performance, voter's forgiveness will likely hinge on how likable they find their disgraced candidate It’s a win-or-lose game that some, like Clinton win, while others such as Strauss-Kahn, Weiner and Berlusconi might as well have already lost.