According to The Associated Press, Rep. Gary Condit admitted to police that he had a romantic relationship with Chandra Levy, a federal intern, who has been missing since April 30. At this time police do not consider Condit a suspect in Levy’s disappearance.
However, Condit’s refusal to go public with his extramarital affair is a betrayal to his constituents and party, who support a candidate partially on their morals and their public persona.
The fact that Condit lied will be more damaging to his reputation and family because it directly relates to his credibility.
If he would hide an affair from police trying to find a missing person, then his peers and his constituents should question his honesty in his job as a congressman.
Elected officials should have learned from recent mistakes that lying about affairs damages the credibility of the elected official. Right or wrong, media coverage into “private family issues” will now plague Condit for his long silence about the affair.
“I think being a little bit more cautious as to feeding this media frenzy is something that the congressman has tried to do,” said Condit’s attorney, Abbe Lowell in a CNN interview.
This however, is not the case. Hiding the truth has only fueled the “frenzy” because the media now feels Condit has something to hide.
By lying about his affair Condit has done serious damage to his political reputation, and alienated his party and the voters of his district.
In the future it will be in his best interest to divulge any information his relationship with Levy so that he does not further take away from the job he was elected to do because his integrity is in question.