Eliot Laurence Spitzer (born June 10, 1959) is an American politician who served as the 54th Governor of New York from 2007 until his resignation on March 17, 2008. The Attorney General of New York for eight years, Spitzer was elected in 2006, succeeding three-term Governor George Pataki. Soon after taking office, Spitzer was embroiled in a prostitution scandal which culminated in his resignation. Following his resignation, he hosted a short-lived program, Viewpoint with Eliot Spitzer on Current TV.
Growing up in the Bronx, New York, he was third and youngest child of real estate tycoon Bernard Spitzer and Anne Goldhaber, both the children of Jewish immigrants to New York. He received a Bachelor's degree at Princeton University, and his Juris Doctor at Harvard Law School. He entered legal practice with the firm of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, and subsequently the Manhattan District Attorney's office to prosecute organized crime. He launched the investigation that brought down the Gambino crime family's control over Manhattan's garment and trucking industries. In 1994, Spitzer left to work at the law firm of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom and, later, Constantine and Partners.
In the 1998 election, Spitzer defeated incumbent Republican Dennis Vacco by a slim margin to become New York State Attorney General. His campaign was financed by a controversial multi-million dollar loan from his father. As attorney general, Spitzer prosecuted cases relating to corporate white collar crime, securities fraud, internet fraud and environmental protection. He pursued cases against computer chip price fixing, investment bank stock price inflation, predatory lending practices by mortgage lenders, fraud at American International Group, and the 2003 mutual fund scandal. He also sued Richard Grasso, the former chairman of the New York Stock Exchange, over a compensation package perceived to be excessive.
In 2007, Spitzer was inaugurated Governor of New York after defeating Republican John Faso. During his time in office, he proposed a bill to legalize same-sex marriage in New York and issued an executive order allowing undocumented immigrants to be issued driver's licenses; both attracted controversy. In July 2007, he was admonished for his administration's involvement in ordering the New York State Police to record the whereabouts of State Senate majority leader Joseph L. Bruno. On March 10, 2008, it was reported that Spitzer was a client of Emperors Club VIP. The scandal prompted him to resign as Governor on March 17, 2008...
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