Intense Media Scrutiny Helps Bring Down Acerbic Kerik


The acerbic Bernard Kerik made few friends and more than a few enemies in the media during his career as a jail boss and police commissioner in New York. Journalists looked into his personal and professional life with particular gusto after he was nominated as Homeland Security secretary, and that scrutiny helped bring him down.

The New York Daily News reported Sunday that Kerik had accepted thousands of dollars in cash and gifts without proper disclosure. The paper also said Kerik had ties to a construction company that investigators believe is linked to the mob. On Monday, the News followed up with a report that Kerik conducted two extramarital affairs simultaneously, using a secret apartment for the liaisons. One paramour was book publisher Judith Regan. Newsweek reported that Kerik’s “tangled personal life” may have scotched his federal nomination even if his nanny problem hadn’t. Even the staunchly pro-Republican New York Post referred Monday to Kerik’s “curious personal relationships.”


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