BREAKING: Video Game Critic Spitzer Involved in Prostitution Ring

March 10, 2008 -

He may be opposed to violent video games like Hitman: Codename 47, but an FBI document alleges that New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer (D) was known as Client 9 to an upscale, international prostitution ring.

Spitzer is seen at left with Silda, his wife of 21 years.

The New York Times is reporting a breaking story that Spitzer will make some type of announcement this afternoon about the case. (UPDATE: Spitzer briefly apologized, but didn't 'fess up to anything specific...)

Federal prosecutors apparently caught Spitzer on a wiretap arranging for a prostitute to travel from New York to Washington, D.C., where he was visiting on business. It is a federal offense to transport someone across state lines for the purpose of engaging in prostitution.

During his 2006 gubernatorial campaign, Spitzer pledged to regulate video game content and called for a universal rating system. Video game legislation approved by the New York Assembly during his first year in office seemed fast-tracked for passage, but eventually stalled due to a bitter political feud between Spitzer and Senate Majority Leader Joseph Bruno (R). The video game bill was expected to be revived in 2008, but that is certainly questionable now, as is Spitzer's future.

During the 2006 campaign Spitzer called out the video game industry for excessive violence and, ironically, sexual content in its products:

Like all parents, I know it is increasingly difficult to protect our children from negative influences... we have learned that when self-regulation fails, government must step in... we must do more to protect our children from excessive sex and violence in the media...


Media content has gotten more graphic, more violent and more sex-based... Currently, nothing under New York State law prohibits a fourteen-year old from walking into a video store and buying... a game like 'Grand Theft Auto,' which rewards a player for stealing cars and beating people up. Children can even simulate having sex with a prostitute...

GP: The hypocrisy meter is just about off the scale... Check out page 36 of this FBI document for some of the dirty details of Client 9's hotel encounter with a hooker named "Kristen."

UPDATE: Spitzer is a superdelegate for another frequent video game critic, Sen. Hillary Clinton.

RANDOM THOUGHT: Can a homemade Client 9 game be far behind?




I wish something like this to happen to that knucklehead in my state (cah-lee-phone-eya), Leland Yee...

I'd like to think that Spitzer's resignation doesn't end the matter and that some gung-ho prosecutor with aspirations to the Governor's mansion will pick up this ball and run with it -- just like Spitzer would have when he was the A.G.

He still hasn't stated whether he'll resign or not:

[inaudible] … politics that would rebuild New York and create opportunity for all. We vowed to bring real change to New York and that will continue. Today, I want to briefly address a private matter. I have acted in a way that violated the obligations to my family and that violates my — or any — sense of right and wrong. I apologize first, and most importantly, to my family. I apologize to the public, whom I promised better. I do not believe that politics in the long run is about individuals. It is about ideas, the public good and doing what is best for the State of New York. But I have disappointed and failed to live up to the standard that I expect of myself. I must now dedicate some time to regain the trust of my family. I will not be taking questions. Thank you very much. I will report back to you in short order. Thank you very much.

He's KINDA implying that he won't, talking about a "private matter" and how politics isn't about individuals but about issues.

no we need Yee to be discovered as part of some hostel or SAW like operation, that would sum up his criticism into hypocrisy...

I wouldn't call this irony, nor hypocrisy. It's not even the same issue. Minors' access to adult content vs. adult access to prostitution. Hypocrisy would be if Spitzer knowingly bought his 12 year old kid an R rated movie, video game, or, even better, a porn mag.

Well, isn't it ironic? Don't you think?

Someone should create flash game off this.

Oddly enough, while I'm against video game legislation, I'm actually VERY disappointed with the game community here.

Ok, the guy had issues with 'games are for kids, kids shouldn't have access to adult material, so regulate games'. He was wrong.

But what he got 'caught' doing was a conceptual business transaction between adults... and now the game community is doing a collective 'see! he is immoral! not us!' without thinking that they are now essentially trashing ANOTHER group that has gotten the short end of the morality stick.

Props to Todd for also pointing this out.

@Pixelantes Anonymous:

McGreevey thought he could batten down and ride it out, too. He was wrong. So is Spitzer.


I think prostitution should be legal, but that isn't the point. This guy was doing something in real life that he wants to be regulated in videogames. End of story.


Do you think Mrs. Spitzer will see it as merely a consentual business transaction between adults?


Oh, I completely agree. Spitzer has made so many enemies in Albany they will NEVER let him stay. He's done whether he likes it or not.

"Welcome to America, where the gaming industry is being treated as a plague and politicans are pimps." -Rocket Punch

Wow, thats the best quote about a game-bashing politician I've ever heard :) Nominate this quote as videogame quote of the year.

why don't people understand when you want to take the moral high ground and teach theworld about it you need to be clean yourself or you come clean about your past. If you don't dothis you'll sound as a moron that can't uphold the standards he want imposed on others. and your words sound empty.


Actually, the hypocrisy runs a little deeper. This guy was prosecuting defendants on prostitution charges and, when he won, smugly watching them get carted off to prison.

"Why is it that people with these particular skeletons in their closets go on such crusades to demonize and vilify those who are free about it?"

It's simple really... Spitzer and others like him are scum; what they care about is money, power, pleasure, etc. Illegal or controversial pleasures are some of the things they don't mind participating in. the reason they demonize and crusade against the very things they practice is because they want power and fame and know it will get them votes; and they often do get those votes. If they didn't crusade they would never get as powerful and thus their lusts for power would never be fulfilled. These same people are also stupid enough to think that they will never get caught and their hypocrisy and lies will never be exposed.

It is hypocrisy... Even if you do not see the hypocricy in his position against games (such as the prositution in GTA) while sengaging in prostitution himself, there is also the fact that he apparently busted a Prostitution ring back in 2004... and i'm sure any speech he included with that bust was probably very much against prostitution.

Maybe the Hot Coffee mod made him do it? Politicians have trouble distinguishing fantasy from reality, so he probably thought he was still playing GTA.

On a side point, I agree that prostitution should be legalized. It's OK to lie to a girl in a bar, get her drunk, take her home, knock her up and kick her out, but it's bad to pay a girl for sex? That's a little ass-backwards. "Lying and drugging is OK, but being honest and blunt is inexcusable." I don't foresee myself visiting a newly-legal prostitute, but I think a consensual visit with a sex worker is a better option than rape.

well his credibility has been destroyed. Still one less threat to video games. Always good.

Oops. "Con-"sensual"" was the intended spelling, but I forgot the quotes and the hyphen. :-)

@Kris O.:

Not only should prostitution be legalized but it should also be subsidized by the govermnment for those, like myself, that can't afford it -- like Section 8 rent, food stamps, and Pell grants for college.

@ Todd

Yes, it is hypocrisy in the sense that someone who proposed what amounted to legislating morality turned out to be not so moral himself. I recommend listening to the Korn song “Hypocrites.”


This is hypocrisy as the governor is trying to enforce moral codes (like video games legislation, which is done under the guise that it is offensive and immoral for youngsters, which i disagree) while at the same time being for lack of a better work "immoral" himself.
With that said prostitution should be legalized but this is because government shouldn't be regulating speech or conduct on the basis of offensiveness or morality, only harm to others (like murder, rape, theft, child abuse and molestation, ect.)

yeah, but he doesn't kill the hookers and take his money back, that we know of.

How do you make a hormone? Snatch you money back.


Funny you mention that other hypocrite Leland Yee as he has also been caught at the very least trying to solicit prostitutes for sex. In reality all these politicians are f**kin' hypocrites.

Also, regardless of your stance on prostitution or Spitzer's stance on violent video games, there's the simple fact that he's the governor - the highest ranking public officer - of New York. Before that, he was Attorney General - the chief man responsible for enforcing the laws of the state. Why should anyone in the state of New York have any respect for the rule of law when the man responsible for enforcing those laws can't be bothered to follow them himself?
I don't think this is really ironic, or hypocrisy in action, but it does destroy the man's credibility. I don't think he should remain in office any longer than absolutely necessary, though - why should we let him have such a hand in writing the rules we as a society live by, when he won't follow those rules himself?

Also this:

"...we have learned that when self-regulation fails, government must step in… we must do more to protect our children from excessive sex and violence in the media…"


Introducing the new Spitzersoft game, "Pimp Tycoon". Coming this fall.

Come on guys you know it was simply research into the nature of gta. Give the guy a break he is working *hard* to protect us from such things.

Can't wait for a Penny Arcade comic on this...

Just imagine the kind of homebrew games that can come from this story. Maybe a game like the "Dark Assembly" segments from the Disgaea series would be in order :)

This is hypocrisy in action. Not only did he falsly claim games promoted prostitution, but he was a no-nonsense attorney general who busted a prostitution ring. He was known as the sheriff of Wall Street. Now he is disgraced, even if he does not resign.

Here's a confusing aspect of the story:

D.C. has more call-girl services than national monuments. Why's Spitzer trucking in talent from New York? And leaving himself open to the federal Mann Act felony charge. And, I'd imagine, paying extra for transportation costs and travel time. Weird.

Well, that's just hilarious. Seriously, I lol'd right in the middle of work...

It's so funny that he would criticize a game for allowing sex w/ prostitutes, when during the same time, he was screwing one!

Friends please don't blame Eliot Spitzer for his own stupid actions. It was games like Grand theft auto that trained Mr Spitzer how to sleep with prostitutes.

Irony thy name is Spitzer.

Beware the Ides of March!

Obviously, the prostitution industry cannot be trusted to voluntarily self-regulate access by elected officials to their products.

Sweet, sweet irony...

@ Soothsayer
Ironically enough, we're reading Caesar in my pre-AP class.

Well, yeah. OK then, apparently fictional violence is bad, but paying for a booty call, that's OK.

(Ironically, I don't personally have a problem with prostitution. I think it should be legal but government regulated. I'm not a huge fan of government regulation, but the fact is legalized prositution would pose a serious health risk if not controlled. Plus, government regulation would cut down on violent crimes associated with and make the treatment considerably more humane for the women.)

In the end, I guess I'm not surprised. We had a local guy here who was a little too uptight in his beliefs. Fast forward a couple years we find out he was hiring male prostitutes. What was the name of the florida senator who was into congressional pages? Something Foley? Congress seems to have a problem finding ways to deal with its baser instincts.

Now we just need to get Jack Thompson in trouble for his bomb threat, and we're good to go again.

GTHotel. Out now.... Rated Mature

so, its ok to hire a prostitute, but wrong to hire a virtual one?

can someone explain this please


i agree. i think they sould give out prostitution licenses, and a prostute should be able to file a federal complaint against their boss for mistreating them.


Yes, because he doesn't want that type of thing being accessible to children. His logic suppositions are flawed but the logic is sorta consistent.


Hard to say. I know nothing about their marriage or what rules they have within it. Given that they guy is a powerful jerk I would wager that his wife did not know about or consent to his prostitution, but that doesn't make protistution it'self immoral. I know plenty of people where both partners have conceptual sex outside their marriage and are perfectly happy with it.

I'd also like to note that modern entertainment still isn't as explicit as typical Rennoisance fare.

Yet another one here to agree about the legalisation of prostitution. About the same reasons as Jadecritic's.

Did you know that the French governement is the biggest pimp in France? Well yeah. No tatus AND income tax. France and love, ahhh...

@ Grizzam 512, That's the only reason I liked museums as a kid.


Wow.... just, wow. Two words for this guy:
Bleeding hyppocrate.

It's a damn good thing he didn't play videogames. I mean, if he does this on his own, image what sick and twisted things he would have done if he had played Mario Kart as a kid!

Well, I like seeing that a politician, even a democrat, is getting busted for breaking the law, but I question the relationship between what he espouses and what he did.

He didn't force prostitutes on kids, so I don't think it's really a VG hypocrisy story. He wasn't alerting children to what he was doing, so it doesn't quite mesh as a counter to the GTA arguments.

It's pretty much "Politician Critical of Video Games busted for frequenting prostitutes."

Not worth much of a chuckle, but I do think a smug grin of satisfaction at having the scandal exposed is in order.
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