Friday, January 23, 2009

Yet Another Sex With An Intern Scandal

There is another big sex scandal with an intern brewing. In Portland, Oregon, new Mayor Sam Adams, who is is openly Gay, confessed that he lied about a relationship with a city hall intern who was just 17 at the time, claiming that the relationship only turned sexual once the young man turned 18. However voter anger and calls for resignation of the mayor are rapidly building.

Adams has lost substantial public support in recent days over the scandal, after winning a recent November easy election victory over a field of weak competition to win the mayor's office. Most local newspapers including the local Gay community, JUST OUT, have all now called for the Adams to resign. And picketers and nasty messages are popping up on the official website run by Adams. What seems to most anger the public is the young age of the intern involved in the scandal when Adams was 42 years old. And unfortunately, the scandal reminds many Portland area voters of the sex scandal with former Mayor Neil Goldschmidt with a 14 year old girl. Goldschmidt was even a member of the Carter administration because of his expertise on transportation issues. But the Goldschmidt scandal was not discovered until long after the statue of limitations for criminal prosecution had passed, so no criminal charges were ever brought against the former mayor and Carter Administration Transportation Secretary.

However, as bad as the Adams scandal may appear to be, objectively speaking, Adam still has some factors working in his favor to keep his office. First of all, so far no criminal charges have been brought against Adams, unlike the Governor of Illinois or Larry Craig who are both holding on to their offices despite arrests for claimed misconduct. Secondly, sex scandals can be survivable, as proved by the example of Bill Clinton, where lying about sex may certainly not viewed favorably by the public, however does not make it impossible to wait out a sex scandal and hang on to the office.

Certainly the Mayor is now damaged goods. And it seems more than hypocritical that on Adams own website that he once complained about a number of adult entertainment businesses such as strip clubs he noticed during a long walk through a downtown Portland neighborhood. Adams seemed to be creating a phony moralistic public image for himself while concealing his secret tawdry relationship with the young intern.

A number of protests outside of the Portland, Oregon city hall are expected today. But whether this will be enough to force Adams from office yet remains to be seen. Adams might be able to survive this scandal, however there are calls for Oregon's Attorney General to investigate this scandal, and unless some charges are filed, Adams could just pull out a "Bill Clinton" and wait for his critics to tire out and outlast this scandal. But certainly none of this is good or helps to inspire much faith in local government. Intern sex scandals are never a good thing, nationally or locally, straight or Gay.


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