When did we become such an unforgiving people?

It was exactly three years ago today that Robert Torricelli announced that he was dropping out of the United States Senate race. Republican Douglas Forrester was on his way to Washington — 13 points ahead of Torricelli in a Star-Ledger/Rutgers-Eagleton poll released a few days earlier. Torricelli’s own polls showed his negatives at 75%. Where are they now? Bob Torricelli was convicted of leaving the scene of an accident after a fender bender in Lambertville. He claimed it was his ex-wife driving, but the Municipal Court Judge (and the Appeals Court Judge) didn’t see it that way. He’s making money, dabbling in politics (he used some of his $2 million warchest to derail Howard Dean in Iowa last year), and got a lucrative appointment from a federal judge whose appointment he helped secure. Doug Forrester is the Republican nominee for Governor, running about 4-10 percentage points behind Jon Corzine. Frank Lautenberg, who succeeded his nemesis in the Senate, seems to be enjoying his return to the Senate — perhaps so much that he’ll run again in 2008, when he turns 84-years-old. Frank Pallone, who was offered the Democratic nod for U.S. Senate, accepted, and then after turning off his cell phone and taking a walk through downtown Princeton, changed his mind — now he’s campaigning hard to get the Senate appointmen if Corzine is elected Governor. Ken Snyder, Torricelli’s campaign manager, is back in Pennsylvania where he’s running a consulting firm. He did the TV ads for Atlantic City mayoral candidate Bob Levy in his June ’05 primary against Lorenzo Langford. Torricelli’s spokeswoman, Debra DeShong, went on to work for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and presidential candidate John Kerry before becoming as Director of Communications and Public Affairs at the United Nations Foundation in December 2004. Bill Pascoe, Forrester’s campaign manager, is running a consulting firm in Chicago. He returned to New Jersey last spring as Communications Director for Bret Schundler’s campaign. Forrester’s Communications Director, Mark Pfeifle, is now the spokesman for FEMA. (No “one disaster to another jokes, please.) Angelo Genova, who argued for the Democrats before the New Jersey Supreme Court that it was still feasible to flip Senate candidates, is still in court: he’s representing Loretta Weinberg in her challenge to the results of the Special Election Convention for State Senate in the 37th district. Peter Sheridan, the GOP lawyer, was appointed by President Bush to serve as a U.S. District Court Judge two years ago. He’s still waiting for the Senate to confirm him. The other Republican lawyer, Bill Baroni, was elected to the State Assembly in 2003 — the only Republican to unseat a Democratic incumbent. David Chang, the Korean businessman who played a key role in ending Torricelli’s political career, was released from federal prison on October 1, 2003. If you know where Chang is today, e-mail us. James Treffinger, who was the front runner for the GOP Senate nomination until FBI agents raided his office just days after the filing deadline, was released from federal prison on December 17, 2004. He is teaching at a church in Bloomfield. Kenneth Pasternak, the millionaire stock broker who briefly flirted with a bid for the GOP Senate nomination (against Torricelli it would have been the “Battle of the Day Traders”), has been charged with securities fraud. James E. McGreevey, the Governor who stood beside his onetime rival and onetime friend as Torricelli ended his political career, was gone less than two years later. Now Howard Stern is offering a $25,000 prize to anyone who can get McGreevey to go on the air with him for three minutes.

When did we become such an unforgiving people?