Coming Clean: A Celebrity Guide To Admitting Sexual Misconduct

Coming Clean: A Celebrity Guide To Admitting Sexual Misconduct


Letterman's admission of affairs with staffers deserves a round of applause.

In the battle for late night talk show supremacy, David Letterman stuck it to the competition last Thursday. There really is no way to beat Dave's on-air admission that he'd had sex with several of his female staffers and that fellow CBS employee and 48 Hours Mystery producer Robert Joel Halderman had threatened to expose his affairs unless he forked over $2 million in hush money. Like a true player, the 62-year-old host straight up told the world that yes, he had been hosting the Late Show of Genitals with David Letterman. Not only did he get it in, he also got some self-deprecating jokes into his admission: "Would it be embarrassing if [the affairs] were made public? Yes, it would—especially for the women."

Obviously a sex scandal is embarrassing for any public figure, whether they're a TV host, an athlete, or a politician, but when shit hits the fan, you gotta say something. Here are our favorite admissions of guilty pleasure...


Jim McGreevey, Governor of New Jersey
When: August 2004
Scandal: Faced with a potential sexual harassment lawsuit from Golan Cispel, the former lover McGreevey had given a homeland security position then later fired when people realized he was completely unqualified, the married father of two announced he was gay and resigned. That's not gay as in happy.
Admission quote: "Having the ability to truthfully set forth my identity might have enabled me to be more forthright in fulfilling and discharging...my Constitutional obligations." Heh, he said "fulfilling and discharging."
COMPLEX APPROVAL RATING:
letter-4
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Eliot Spitzer, Governor of New York
When: March 2008
Scandal: Under investigation for fishy money transfers that suggested bribes, Spitzer was discovered to have spent at least $15,000—possibly as much as $80,000—on high-priced call girls while Attorney General and Governor. Hey, it costs to assume positions of power.
Admission quote: "The remorse I feel will always be with me." Fortunately they make a cream for the sores.
COMPLEX APPROVAL RATING:
letter-3
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Mark Sanford, Governor of South Carolina
When: June 2009
Scandal: After disappearing for a week without making contact with his family or security team, the married father of four, who'd said he would be hiking the Appalachian Trail but was discovered flying back from Argentina, admitted that he'd been with his Argentine mistress all the way down in South America because it takes two to tango (and fuck).
Admission quote: "I'm a bottom line kinda guy, I'll lay it out, it's gonna hurt." Don't forget your safe word!
COMPLEX APPROVAL RATING:
letter-4
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Larry Craig, Idaho Senator
When: August 2007
Scandal: Craig was arrested at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport for allegedly trying to spark some gay bathroom sex by tapping his foot in the next man's stall (the senator claimed that he just takes a "wide stance" while chucking deuces). Though he maintained his innocence and heterosexuality, he nonetheless pleaded guilty to a lesser charge.
Admission quote: "I should not have kept this arrest to myself, and I should've told my family and my friends about it. I wasn't eager to share this failure but I should have anyway, because I am not gay." You know how we know he's gay? Because he keeps saying he isn't.
COMPLEX APPROVAL RATING:
letter-1
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Kobe Bryant, NBA superstar
When: December 2003
Scandal: Accused of sexually assaulting a 19-year-old Colorado hotel employee, the Lakers star got up on a stage with his wife Vanessa and admitted that he'd had consensual adulterous sex but denied taking it hard to the hole.
Admission quote: "[To his wife, who he later gave a $4 million 8-carat purple diamond ring as an apology] You're a blessing. You're the beat to my heart. You're the air I breathe." She's just not the woman he goes back door on.
COMPLEX APPROVAL RATING:
letter-1
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John Edwards, former North Carolina Senator and 2008 Democratic presidential nominee
When: August 2008
Scandal: In October 2007, The National Inquirer miraculously and accurately reported that Edwards had been creeping with a former campaign worker and impregnated her while his wife Elizabeth battled breast cancer. Edwards claimed that it was just tabloid lies but eventually owned up to the affair on Nightline.
Admission quote: "It happened during a period after [my wife] was in remission from cancer." Oh, so he's only a huge asshole, not the world's biggest asshole.
COMPLEX APPROVAL RATING:
letter-2
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Jimmy Swaggart, Televangelist
When: 1988
Scandal: The holier-than-thou televangelist railed against other preachers gone wild but got his when one of them, adulterous minister Marvin Gorman, hired a private detective who caught Swaggart coming out of a hotel room used for prostitution. He famously wept before his congregation and God, begging forgiveness (and was later caught with another hooker in his car).
Admission quote: "I have sinned against you, my Lord!" Well, at least he's right with his wife.
COMPLEX APPROVAL RATING:
letter-4
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Donald Sterling, Owner of the Los Angeles Clippers
Year: August 2004
Scandal: The billionaire owner of the L.A. Clippers is one tight puckered asshole when it comes to paying players, but he'll make a hooker rich quick. After denying that he'd had a relationship with prostitute Alexandra Castro in a 2003 deposition, Sterling changed his story while suing her over a property she claimed he'd given her. In graphic detail that would make Lil' Kim blush, the old man described all the nasty sex he and the $500-a-trick "freak" had enjoyed.
Admission quote: "All over my building, in my bathroom, upstairs, in the corner, in the elevator..." And those are just a few of the places she had to change his diaper.
COMPLEX APPROVAL RATING:
letter-5
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Ronaldo, Brazilian soccer star
When: April 2008
Scandal: While out at a nightclub, the soccer star met three hookers and propositioned them. When he discovered he was in a sausage party with three transvestites, he offered to pay them to leave, but one of them tried to extort him for $30,000 to not tell the press he kicks it with lady-dudes. So of course Ron spread the word his damn self.
Admission quote: "I am completely heterosexual. There is no doubt about it." Besides his jumpoff's Adam's apple, of course.
COMPLEX APPROVAL RATING:
letter-2
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Hugh Grant, actor
When: July 1995
Scandal: Most guys would have killed to be banging Elizabeth Hurley in '95, but Hugh Grant isn't most guys. Her actor boyfriend fucked the whole thing up to get brains from a mildly attractive hooker "Divine Brown" on Sunset Boulevard. Like a true celebrity, he chose the most serious and dignified platform he could think of to speak about the incident for the first time: The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.
Admission quote: "I think you know in life what's a good thing to do and what's a bad thing, and I did a bad thing." But damn those tonsils felt good!
COMPLEX APPROVAL RATING:
letter-4

Tags: affair, david-letterman, extort, extortion, sex-scandal
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