Disgraced Senator Repents, Becomes a Veterinarian


What does a politician do after he torpedoes his career with a scandal that even the scandal-weary insiders in Washington, D.C., can’t ignore? He becomes Doctor Dolittle, of course!

Former Sen. John Ensign, R-Nevada, resigned his position in 2011 after shocking details about an affair with a friend of his wife’s, and the concurrent efforts to boost the lobbying career of his mistress’s husband, came to light. I think most of us suspect that this kind of thing occurs all the time in the hallowed halls of Capitol Hill, so his actions in themselves probably weren’t considered criminal by his morally bankrupt peers — the problem was that he got caught.

So, what could Ensign do after his 10-year political career ended? The answer: Get back to his roots and do the job he was (hopefully) good at before he went to Washington.

Last week, Ensign opened a veterinary hospital in Las Vegas. The clinic touts its state-of-the art facilities, emergency animal care and its offerings of an array of specialized diagnostic equipment.

It sounds like Ensign’s career as a shyster began early. His bio on the clinic’s website states that at the age of eight, he and his brother got a dog, and later on Ensign bought his brother’s half-share in the dog for $5.

I ask you: Who does that?

Ensign is up on all the latest techniques and practices, according to the clinic’s website. Over the two years since he resigned from the Senate, he’s clearly had time to get up to speed on current thinking in veterinary medicine. He’s particularly hot on lasers. He says, "Lasers are an important part of my practice ÔǪ they have such wide uses and deliver excellent results."

I can’t help hearing this quote in the voice of another doctor:

On the bright side, it sounds like Ensign has been a much better friend to animals than he has to people. He’s volunteered at a local low-cost spay/neuter clinic and in 2005 was awarded the Humane Society of the United States’ Humane Legislator of the Year award for his extraordinary leadership on advancing key animal protection laws, including one that made it a felony to transport animals across state lines for the purpose of fighting.

I hope Ensign turns out to be a great veterinarian and that his clinic is a great aid to the critters in his care. He could use a karma reboot, that’s for sure!

About JaneA Kelley: Punk-rock cat mom, science nerd, animal shelter volunteer, and all-around geek with a passion for bad puns, intelligent conversation, and role-play adventure games. She gratefully and gracefully accepts her status as chief cat slave for her family of feline bloggers, who have been writing their cat advice column, Paws and Effect, since 2003. JaneA dreams of making a great living out of her love for cats.

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