Since sex is the big story of the gubernatorial campaign, thanks to Carl Paladino and Roger Stone, Page Six items take on a life larger than usual.
A two-inch story published there today revolves around prostitute Irma Nici and casts so wide a net it evokes all the bizarre hijinks of the governor’s race, while simultaneously reigniting the CNN/Fox war.
Nici is the latest public playchild of Paladino strategist Stone. She was paid $50,000 to tell In Touch magazine that she’d had sex with David Beckham, who is suing her and the magazine over the story. Kristin Davis, the former madam who is Stone’s other candidate for governor (threesomes are his minimum in politics and the sack), has emerged as Nici’s strongest backer.
Davis says that Nici called her in 2007 seeking a second girl for a threesome with Beckham, backing up the In Touch accusation. In exchange, Nici is now giving Page Six credibility, such as it is, to the number one Stone fixation, the contention that Eliot Spitzer was a big time client of Davis’s prostitution ring and that he wore socks when he had sex.
So today Nici, who supposedly was a Spitzer regular working for Davis, is quoted as saying that Spitzer “would hardly undress, would keep the hat and socks on and just go.” Page Six, as part of the endless Murdoch empire mockery of Spitzer (while they celebrate David Vitter, the Republican senator for Louisiana who’s running for re-election), concluded that he “couldn’t last as long in bed as his one-hour CNN show.”
“It was 45 minutes at most and that would include undressing,” claims Nici, who said the socks were sometimes white, a slight deviation from Stone’s black sox line, and that he actually had sex wearing a green, Jets-like, baseball cap. Of course, the timing of this new Nici trashing of Spitzer is hardly coincidental. Stone has vowed that he “will make sure” that Spitzer’s new show on CNN “gets cancelled.”
Unfortunately, the joint effort to tar Beckham and revive the Spitzer scandal relies on two uncertain witnesses. As hard as Nici and Davis are trying to stay on the same page on both Spitzer and Beckham, the tawdry details they toss out as meat don’t quite mesh.
Kirsten Davis wrote a book last year, The Manhattan Madam. For 165 pages, it describes just about every potential high-end clients her whorehouse ever serviced. No one but Spitzer is named, but Davis serves up “celebrity clients” like “a comedian/movie star,” “a legendary actor who starred in one of my all-time favorite movies,” “a famous Jewish jeweler,” “the president of a bank,” “a hot, young New York baseball player,” “the lead guitarist of one of my favorite hair bands,” “an internationally known writer,” “a professional basketball player,” “two members of international royalty,” “an Italian supermodel,” “a shipping mogul,” “a New York real estate developer,” “a magazine writer/editor,” “a writer for a very popular and highly regarded squeaky-clean family TV show,” “an award-winning songwriter,” and “a wealthy trader.”
But no mention of the most famous soccer player in the world. Oops.
And when Davis told her Spitzer story in the book, he was anything but a 45-minute man-in-a-rush. Spitzer “booked her for five days, four hours at a pop, at one thousand dollars per hour,” Davis wrote, a claim made even more remarkable by the fact that Spitzer was then the state’s most aggressive attorney general, turning Wall Street on its head, apparently in his spare time. When one gal got tired of that draining a schedule, “I got him hooked on another,” says Davis, and Spitzer “saw her five days in a row, four hours a day.”
That’s an hour longer than Rush Limbaugh talks every day.
And Davis made no mention of Spitzer doing it wearing a cap (J-E-T-S JETS JETS JETS) even though the book goes on ad nauseum about what the Times still calls this “unproven” charge, repeatedly denied by the Manhattan District Attorney’s office, which seized all of Davis’ records and put her in jail.
When Page Six is inhaling anything you throw out there, who cares about consistency?
All of this par-for-course dish drama does work its way back into New York politics because Stone’s fingerprints are all over this intrigue.
Nici has countersued Beckham. Her lawyer is a guy named Paul Jensen, a longtime right wing attorney out in California who’s been working with Stone for years. Jensen announced just a couple of days ago that Nici will be making further “explosive revelations” and said that Beckham “is going to pay” for suing her, claiming the 26-year-old has suffered severe chest pain because Beckham was calling her a liar.
Jensen is already demanding a million dollars in compensation from Beckham.
Stone and Jensen worked together in 2003 in the Florida senate campaign of Larry Klayman, the founder of Judicial Watch who says Stone took him “to the cleaners” in a campaign that wiped him out financially (he finished with one percent of the vote). Klayman calls Jensen, who was his campaign treasurer, one of Stone’s “dirty dozen.”
In 2004, Philadelphia news stories connected Stone and Jensen in a dirty-tricks effort to help Stone’s longtime ally Arlen Specter. And I reported that year that Stone was secretly orchestrating the Democratic presidential campaign of Al Sharpton, seeking in particular to help Sharpton qualify for federal matching funds. That involved collecting $5,000 in contributions in 20 states, and Jensen and his wife, despite their extreme right wing views, contributed $250 apiece, the maximum that the Federal Election Commission would match.
When it was revealed that Spitzer was involved with a prostitution ring that had absolutely nothing to do with Davis, Stone decided to lay claim to the title of the man who tipped off the feds. So he contended that his lawyer had written a letter to the FBI, sent months before the Spitzer downfall, telling the feds that Spitzer frequented call girls. The lawyer who signed the supposed letter that the feds say they never got was none other than Paul Jensen. Stone said it was Jensen “who advised me to let the FBI know of Eliot Spitzer’s black sock fetish.”
Until recently, Jensen was best known for his madcap anti-gay lawsuits, making it odd that Stone has called Jensen “a friend” who “sometimes” represents him, or that Davis’ sidekick Nici is represented by him. Jensen filed suits in 16 states to defrock Presbyterian ministers who “violated their vows” by ordaining gays or performing same sex marriages or being gay. This makes Jensen more ideologically comfortable with the Paladino wing of the Paladino campaign than the Stone wing, which prefers to do its topless grinding at pride parades without the “little speedo.” So far, however, there is no indication that Jensen is working for Paladino.
He’s been busy, until very recently, with another Stone-connected venture: the birther movement. Jensen’s client, Lt. Col. Terrence Lakin, is facing a court martial for refusing military orders that he contends are invalid because, in Lakin’s view, President Obama may not be a natural born citizen. Jensen’s biggest booster in the Lakin case is Stone, who told Talking Points memo back in April that Jensen should not be underestimated.
“Jensen is a bulldog,” Stone said. “A true student of the law. A brilliant litigator. Not adverse to high profile cases and high risk legal strategies. He understands public relations and the damage this can do to Obama. Won’t be adverse to trying to call Obama for testimony.” Jensen has indicated that he might try to use discovery to compel Obama to release a birth certificate, but he’s also said that Stone has advised him not to be too public about his litigation strategy.
The American Patriot Foundation is financing Lakin’s defense and it is run by Jensen and Margaret Hemenway, who shares Jensen’s gay fixation. She once filed a complaint against her daughter’s first grade teacher because the teacher was a lesbian. A couple of days ago, with the case headed for November trial, the Foundation indicated that it had retained new legal counsel without indicating if that was in addition to Jensen, or instead of him.
Every Stone trail winds up with this kind of complicated and contradictory intertwine. He and Davis are running on marriage equality, and Stone is, maybe even authentically, a gay rights advocate; yet here he is aligned, on pocketbook and political ventures, with Jensen. Stone is not a public birther, but is whispering in Jensen’s ear on the biggest birther case. And Paladino, who’s never directly dealt with the birther issue, has put Michael Johns on his campaign payroll, whose blog reveals his own deepening acceptance of the birther movement. A national known Tea Partier, Johns is coordinating the Paladino campaign reach-out to the disparate party elements in New York.