Deep in the stunning New Yorker piece that felled Eric Schneiderman is a remarkable revelation.
One of his four alleged victims — who said he routinely choked, slapped and spit on her — was told by several close friends to keep quiet about the abuse.
Not because it would be hard for her to prove the charges, or because Schneiderman, as New York’s top law enforcement official was a powerful figure.
No: They pressed the anonymous victim to keep silent because of Schneiderman’s liberal leadership, saying “he was too valuable a politician for the Democrats to lose.”
And, it appears, they weren’t alone: More women are now coming forward to detail similar allegations going back years. Apparently, his behavior wasn’t much of a secret in New York political circles.
But everyone looked the other way, rather than discredit a progressive Democratic hero. After all, Schneiderman had led the charge against Wall Street, against Donald Trump, against Exxon.
He’d also taken the lead in support of feminist causes, hailed by abortion-rights advocates as a “Champion of Choice” and filing suit against Harvey Weinstein’s company for allegedly covering up his years of “despicable” sexual harassment.
As one of his victims put it, Schneiderman championed women publicly but abused them privately.
Looking the other way when the abuser is your ally is all too common on the left — as scandals involving Weinstein, former Sen. Al Franken and others have shown.
This hypocrisy has proved the rule in progressive New York. Albany, after all, for years shielded countless Democratic legislative and staff abusers, covering up their behavior with hush money and nondisclosure agreements.
So it’s no surprise that Eric Schneiderman, a creature of Albany, was protected for so long by those who at least suspected the truth.
Maybe this is changing in the #MeToo era. But it’s still worth asking, when next you hear a Democratic pol moralizing about the need to protect women, how many abuse victims were told to just “suck it up” for the cause.
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