Sex – it’s everywhere. Okay, so no complaints there; but what about if we’re talking about sexual affairs – infidelity?
We have people in high positions in our country who are really no better than the average Joe when it comes to being faithful to their wives, with South Carolina governor Mark Sanford as the latest to point fingers at.
Some have just been accused of being unfaithful to their wife while others have been involved in incredible scandals. Sometimes the individual is unable to recuperate and their political career is ruined. Other times, it’s just overlooked.
However, the wife of the politician is embarrassed and has her dirty laundry strewn all over the media every time. Is this just recent?
Of course not. Extramarital affairs have been going on long before organized politics was ever thought of. Some of you may think it’s an outrage while others just think that it shows their human side. No matter how you feel, you can’t deny that it’s not dull in the political world.
It’s nearly impossible to list all of the scandalous affairs of politicians, but here’s a few of history’s noteworthy ones.
1775-1776: Delegate from Virginia to the 2nd Continental Congress
June 1, 1779 – June 3, 1781: Governor of Virginia
1783-1784: Delegate from Virginia to the Congress of the Federation
1785-1789: United States Ambassador to France
March 22, 1790 – December 31, 1793: United States Secretary of State
March 4, 1797 – March 4, 1801: VP of United States
March 4, 1801 – March 4, 1809: President of the United States
In 1802, news came out about Thomas Jefferson and one of his slaves, Sally Hemings. They allegedly had a longtime affair and he reportedly fathered at least one of her children, though there is still controversy as to the validity of the claim.
1896-1897: United States Senator (Class 3) from Utah
There was no hiding the affair Arthur Brown had with Anne Madison Bradley. Bradley made this quite clear when jealousy got the best of her. She’d found letters to Brown from another woman (not his wife, but yet another) and shot him on December 8, 1906. He died four days later.
John F. Kennedy
January 3, 1947 – January 3, 1953: Member of the United States House of Representatives from Massachusetts 11th district
January 3, 1953 – December 22, 1960: United States Senator from MA
January 20, 1961 – November 22, 1963: President of the United States
JFK reportedly had numerous affairs both before and during his term in the White House. More and more accounts of affairs have come forward since Kennedy’s death and there are too many to list, so I’ll just list the most known accounts.
Judy Campbell, former girlfriend of Mafia boss Sam Giancana told of her affair with Kennedy in her book entitled My Story in 1977. She was introduced to JFK in 1960 and their affair began shortly after and continued while he was in the White House.
Another one of Kennedy’s affairs was with artist Mary Pinchot Meyer. This encounter started in 1961 and she was murdered shortly after JFK’s assassination. Also among the alleged indiscretions of JFK were actress Angie Dickenson, Jackie Kennedy’s press secretary Pamela Turnure, and of course actress Marilyn Monroe.
In 2003, Mimi Fahnestock (then Mimi Beardsley) spoke out about her affair with JFK while he was in the White House. She says it started when she was 19 in June 1962 and continued until his death.
January 3, 1949 – September 1, 1976: Member of the United States House of Representatives from Ohio’s 18th district
Hayes had a sexual relationship with his secretary Elizabeth Ray. As a matter of fact, Hays reportedly gave her a raise later on to be part of the staff of the House Administration Committee, not based on any qualifications, but so she could serve as his mistress. This story broke in 1976 and he resigned from his position shortly after.
1973-1979: Mayor of Portland
August 15, 1979 – January 20, 1981: United States Secretary of Transportation
January 12, 1987 – January 14, 1991: Governor of Oregon
The story broke in 2004 that while he was the mayor of Portland, Goldschmidt had a sexual relationship with his fourteen year old babysitter. This news devastated his credibility in the public and most likely ruined his chances for any further political position.
January 3, 1977 – January 9, 1979: Arkansas Attorney General
January 11, 1983 – December 12, 1992: Governor of Arkansas
January 20, 1993 – January 20, 2001: President of the United States
Though there were allegedly other affairs and allegations of sexual harassment, the two main extramarital affairs that were in the public eye regarding Bill Clinton were the 12 year long affair with Gennifer Flowers and the affair with 22 year old intern Monica Lewinski. Gennifer Flowers alleged that she and Clinton had an affair while he was still in Arkansas, but she didn’t come forward until he announced his candidacy for U.S. President.
1989-1995: United States House of Representatives Minority Whip
January 3, 1979 – January 3, 1999: Member of United States House of Representatives from Georgia’s 6th district
January 4, 1995 – January 3, 1999: Speaker of the United States House of Representatives
After Gingrich married his third wife Callista Bisek, he admitted to having an affair with her while he was married to his previous wife, Marianne Ginther. His affair was going on around the same time that Gingrich led the Congressional investigation of Bill Clinton’s affair with Monica Lewinsky. Check out the picture above where he says it was a little mistake “about that big”.
August 27, 1977 – March 1, 1999: Member of United States House of Representatives from Louisiana’s 1st district
Livingston was chosen to replace Newt Gingrich as Speaker of the House. He was all set to take office when he abruptly resigned instead. Apparently his extramarital affairs were exposed, so he chose to resign before he even took office.
January 15, 2002 – November 15, 2004: Governor of New Jersey
McGreevey resigned as governor upon admitting his extramarital affair with Golan Cipel (a man). Perhaps his affair was tipped off when he hired Cipel as his homeland security advisor though he had no prior experience to qualify him for the job. Also, Cipel wasn’t a U.S. citizen. Did he really think he was being discrete?
1983 – 1989: United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York
January 1, 1994 – December 31, 200: Mayor of New York City
Though Giuliani had the utmost of popularity when he started his campaign to run for U.S. President in 2008, when word got out about his extramarital affair with Judith Nathan, his polls steadily slid downward until he was force to drop out of the race.
January 1, 1999 – December 31, 2006: New York State Attorney General
January 1, 2007 – March 17, 2008: Governor of New York
This may not be the latest affair by a politician, but this is one of the best known ones in quite some time. Spitzer was caught hiring high priced prostitutes ($1,000 per hour), and it was confirmed that he spent at least $15,000 on these encounters in a six month period.
Furthermore, it’s suspected by investigators that he spent about $80,000 over the period of a couple of years. From the suspicions of Eliot Spitzer, authorities were unable to uncover a prostitution ring. Spitzer was forced to step down as governor.
These gentleman were probably highly regarded by their peers and their parents throughout their road to the political spotlight; who would have thought they turned out to be sleezeballs?