TODAY   |  July 13, 2013

Elliot Spitzer seeks laughs in run for office

On "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” disgraced former New York Gov. Elliot Spitzer tried to play it for laughs, which followed some serious apologies as he runs for New York City Comptroller, the Big Apple’s second-biggest job. NBC’s Mike Tiabbi reports.

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>> the comeback kid . politicians going from punch line to seeking redemption. the latest, eliot spitzer . that means he's making plenty of rounds on tv to explain his past behavior. mike taibbi has more.

>> reporter: on the tonight show with jay leno , eliot spitzer tried to play it for laughs which is what you do on the " tonight show ." you brought down wall street and the bank, how could you be this stupid?

>> reporter: the serious side couldn't be ignored.

>> the fall from grace is incredibly painful. it is something from which you learn. hopefully you can move on.

>> reporter: since spitzer announced he was returning for new york city comptroller, he's been apologizing as he did on " morning joe ".

>> what i did was wrong and a consequence of hugh brous and failure of self-endull jens.

>> what has changed?

>> a lot of pain. a lot of pain.

>> that's it.

>> yeah. you go through that pain and change.

>> spitzer isn't the first to try for a cobbback after a sex scandal . san diego mayor is trying to hold on to his job in the wake of exyule harassment allegations.

>> i am humble to admit i need help.

>> mark sanford was driven from office and lost his marriage because of an adultery mess. new york congressman anthony weiner whose career crashed afterhe tweeted nude photos of himself now wants to be new york mayor, anthony weiner . comedians are scratching their head, smiling or both. new york city run by weinor and spitzer .

>> new york is bigness. both eliot spitzer and anthony weaner are provocative and new yorkers.

>> reporter: in the meantime, spitzer is making the rounds. he hopes realistically or not that voters will want to hear, too. for "today," mike taibbi , nbc news, los angeles .