Paterson admits to drug use

March 25, 2008 3:50:08 AM PDT
New York Governor David Paterson added more fuel to the fire Monday.Just days after he and his wife admitted to extramarital affairs, Paterson admitted in a NY1 interview that he used cocaine and marijuana when he was in his 20s.

The 53-year-old former lieutenant governor, who succeeded disgraced Governor Eliot Spitzer following a call girl sex scandal, claimed in the interview that he had only used cocaine a couple of times when he was 22 or 23 years old.

He said he had only used marijuana "probably when I was about 20," adding, "I don't think I've touched marijuana since the late 70s."

Paterson said that he gave the same answer to a question about drug use after a 2006 Democratic primary debate between Spitzer and Nassau County Executive Tom Suozzi, at which both admitted having used drugs.

He said his answer didn't receive that much attention at the time because he was running for the relatively obscure position of lieutenant governor.

Paterson put himself across newspaper front pages last week when he said that he and his wife had both committed adultery roughly seven or eight years ago, and that he had done so with several women on numerous occasions.

Then, issues were raised about inappropriate campaign spending. Paterson has since paid back the campaign.