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Christopher Strong

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Strauss-Kahn: Speed Bumps on the Palace Road

Posted: 09/06/11 11:40 AM ET

In my last post, I said that if Dominique Strauss-Kahn decides to throw his hat (or whatever else he may be in the mood to toss) into the "I-wanna-be-president" ring, no one could stop him. While I'm not changing that rant (nobody respects a rant-changer!), DSK nonetheless will have to (successfully) negotiate several speed bumps on the road to the presidential palace.

Bump One: His chilly reception from Martine Aubry, the current leader of his political party, the Socialist Party (Parti Socialiste here in the land of adjective-after-the-noun), and the Party's chosen one for the top job.

Bump Two: Every other political opponent. Particularly Marine Le Pen, the National Front candidate, who will doubtless make much political hay of the apparent fact that all the male members of the Socialist tribe knew of behind-closed-doors escapades of "the great seducer" and chose to keep their little lips sealed.

Bump Three: The outraged French. That portion of, as they say here, "le grand public" who think that Strauss-Kahn deserved to stay in Rikers Island, and that, accordingly, his occupation of the Élysée Palace would be a large and unsightly pimple on the international face of France.

Bump Four: The outraged politicians who are not running for office. All will be putting in their (surprise, surprise) negative assessments of DSK's (lack of good) behaviour, the latest being former Prime Minister Michel Rocard, who, while lauding Strauss-Kahn's abilities, declared him to be mentally ill.

Bump Five: The legal challenges. As unfortunate as it may be for the various women DSK has "loved," in circumstances they are not totally thrilled with, the massive financial muscle of the DSK machine (uh, that would be... wifey's bankroll?) will ensure that the only bars he will have to contend with are the ones where you can order a Chivas Regal on the rocks. And, bien sûr, the legal challenges could, and probably will, drag on for years. The damage here will be the immediate publicity of the former "lovers." Sure, it's circumstantial evidence/heresay/rumours -- in other words, perfect ammunition for innuendo, the preferred stiletto of all politicians, n'est-ce pas?

Bump Six: The wild card. There's one in every game. The one you never expected. The one that changes the game. What could it possibly be in Strauss-Kahn's case? An unfortunate leak of sensitive information? A whistleblower disenchanted with "team DSK"? A definitive "smoking gun" of -- ahem -- "impropriety" from his checkered past?

It's "the Greatest Show on Earth," and the next act in this circus... hey, it's unfolding as we speak! Are you not thrilled?

 

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