Hedge-Fund-Exec.-Cum-Prostitution-Maven Mulls Gov. Run

Feb 8 2010 | 11:50pm ET

Kristin Davis, the hedge fund veteran and “Manhattan Madam” who claims former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer was a client, wants Spitzer’s old job.

Davis launched what promises to be a quixotic bid to lead the Empire State last week at a Libertarian Party convention in Manhattan. Davis, who spent four months in jail for running a prostitution ring, had talked about running against Spitzer—an electoral contest preempted by Spitzer’s 2008 resignation. But she’s remaining in the race, and has some high-profile support.

Veteran Republican operative Roger Stone is behind the bid, the New York Daily News reports. Davis certainly boasts some GOP bonafides: She opposes gun control and calls taxation “confiscation.” But she also favors the legalization of gay marriage, marijuana and, perhaps unsurprisingly, prostitution.

Davis is defending her run, noting that she was valedictorian of her high-school class and is no stranger to legitimate business.

“I worked 10 years in finance,” she told the Libertarians. “I was vice president of a hedge fund.”

No word on which hedge fund, unfortunately.

Davis needs 15,000 signatures to get on the ballot for this November’s elections.

“This is not a hoax, a prank or a publicity stunt,” Stone told the Daily News. “I want to get her a half-million votes.”

That likely won’t make Kristin Davis New York’s next governor—the last time around, in 2006, more than four million cast ballots. But it could sway what is shaping up as an uncertain race, with incumbent Gov. David Paterson—who was Spitzer’s lieutenant governor and succeeded his disgraced boss—has suffering from catastrophically low poll numbers. He will likely earn a Democratic primary challenge from Attorney General Andrew Cuomo (Paterson is also in danger of having his hopes dashed even before a primary by a damaging story reportedly in the works at The New York Times). Nor does Stone think much of Republican front-runner Rick Lazio, the former Long Island congressman last seen losing a Senate election to now-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton 10 years ago—the GOP strategist calls Lazio a “turkey.”


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