Political sex scandals: Who survived, who didn't, and why

Accusations of sexual harassment ended the political career of Bob Filner, who resigned as mayor of San Diego Aug. 23. But sex scandals are not necessarily fatal to political ambition. Against all odds, some politicians survive them. How do they do it? Here’s a list of notable politicos whose careers continued in spite of their slips – and some who didn’t.

2. David Petraeus: goner

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    David Petraeus walks with his wife Holly (l.) past a seated Paula Broadwell (r.) as he arrives to appear before the Senate Intelligence Committee during a hearing on his nomination to be Director of the Central Intelligence Agency on June 23, 2011. Petraeus resigned Nov. 9 after acknowledging an extramarital relationship.
    Cliff Owen/AP/File
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David Petraeus resigned as the Central Intelligence Agency director on Nov. 9, 2012, immediately before news broke of his extramarital affair with Paula Broadwell, an army reservist who wrote his biography, “All In: The Education of General Petraeus.”

The FBI linked Mr. Petraeus to Ms. Broadwell while investigating an e-mail harassment complaint against Broadwell made by Jill Kelley, a family friend of the retired four-star general. The investigation turned up explicit exchanges between Broadwell and Petraeus, who began their affair after he became CIA director in September 2011, a former Petraeus associated told the Associated Press.

Broadwell started her research for Petraeus’s biography in 2009, when he became the US Central Command chief, and she traveled with him in Afghanistan when he served as the US troops commander. Former Petraeus aides told the Washington Post that Broadwell's access to the general was "disconcerting."

Petraeus remains silent on the affair, except for a statement he sent to CIA employees on Friday.

“Such behavior is unacceptable, both as a husband and as the leader of an organization such as ours,” he said.

– Allison Terry, correspondent

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