Friday, June 26, 2009


Every week for a year, it seems, Bill DeWeese has a "come to Jesus" moment regarding bonusgate, reform and openness.

Yesterday, he attended another tent revival where he joined Republican Jim Christiana in touting a database that tracks state spending.

In a bout of glossolalia for the Tribune Review, DeWeese opined that if such a database existed then the entire bonusgate scandal never would have happened (Pittsburgh Tribune-Review 6/26/09).

Watching Bill DeWeese handle snakes in his effort to prove he is blameless in bonusgate is very entertaining. He is quite good at it...too bad he doesn't put the same effort to improve his table manners (but that is a different miracle for a different post.)

As with many of the most overtly religious and sanctimonious (think Sen. Ensign and Gov. Sanford), there is always a strong measure of hypocrisy lurking in the background. Bill DeWeese is certainly no different.

We stood in line at the Dauphin County Courthouse to get our copy of the Veon filing from earlier this month. It is a great read, especially when it comes to seeing specific examples of the arbitrary nature of partisan Republican Attorney General Tom Corbett's enforcement of what he considers the law.

DeWeese's latest effort to abdicate responsibility reminded us of one particular email in the Veon filing that really shows how big a hypocrite, and quite frankly, how big a liar Bill DeWeese is when it comes to reform and his use of state resources for political campaigns.

Take a look at the email for yourself here.

As you can see, DeWeese's political campaign was so intertwined with his legislative office that no one on his staff could tell the difference. "Special Leadership Account" funds were used to pay for political advertising. These very same Special Leadership Accounts were used to award legislative bonuses in all four state legislative caucuses.

It is outrageous for DeWeese to have used "Special Leadership Account" funds to pay for campaign advertising, but it is equally as outrageous to see that DeWeese is supervising and directing his campaign using state employees, during work hours using their state email accounts.

The greatest outrage is the fact Attorney General Tom Corbett had this email and the testimony of Kevin Sidella ("DeWeese aide was fundraiser" Tribune Review, 10/18/08), Mike Manzo ("Manzo testifies before grand jury" Inquirer, 10/17/08), and perhaps many of the other DeWeese staff on this caucus email. Yet, Corbett decided that this isn't the kind of evidence that would result in charges being filed against DeWeese.

What kind of investigation has Corbett conducted?

Everyone has seen and read about the emails that clearly show DeWeese was fully aware of the bonuses ("DeWeese email exchange damning evidence in bonus probe" AP, 3/17/09) and the campaign work being done by his state funded employees ("Bonusgate records contradict DeWeese" 4/6/09). Plus, everyone in the Capitol knows that numerous House Democratic employees testified to the grand jury about what DeWeese knew and what he ordered his staff to do for his campaigns.

DeWeese may have found religion when it comes to reform, but here at CasablancaPA we still consider him the Devil...and it seems like he has cut some deal with Corbett.


Anonymous said...

Maybe Deweese is testifying against you!

Anonymous said...

If DeWeese is the Devil here on CasblancaPA, then Manzo must be below that title.

After all, correct me if I am wrong, but was it Manzo that put a girl friend in a secret leased Cigar Shop signed by Veon, without DeWeese or his staffers knowledge?

Did not Manzo while being engaged and later married to his wife, now pleaded guilty and is turning on many charged and others about to be charged, just to save his own wife from higher punishment?

So, is the problem coming from DeWeese or Manzo these days?

Sure, some charged may be mad at DeWeese for bringing in a Former Inspector General to investigate and provide findings to the Caucus and ordered all cooperation with the AG office, a sign of a victim himself not a perpetrator.

It will not be the emails that convict anyone nor the bonuses paid, it will be the little personal things that really make jurors angry such as, Cigar Shop Lease, Cable TV for a person there, trips paid for state employees to take Motorcycles to Idaho on state time and all verified and testified by Manzo.

Senator Fumo was convicted more on placing 33 state paid vacuum cleaners in each room of his Mansion,, hiring state employees to follow his girlfriends, tend to his farm, setting up Non-Profits to give out grants, and ordering the destruction of computer data files, than anything else.

Corbett and his staff can see the similarities of Fumo and Veon as well as the differences with DeWeese. Manzo from Beaver County was really working more for Veon than even DeWeese ever knew and as the Grand Jury Findings show.

DeWeese cannot be the Devil because the Devil never investigates himself!

Anonymous said...

Wow, it sounds like some DeWeese sychophant is on a Manzo defamation kick. A couple things to consider:

1. Punk or not, Manzo is testifying under oath. Granted, Manzo is an admitted felon, but so was almost every mobster who ended up convicting their former bosses. If Billy is so clean as the driven snow, why is he concerned? He has nothing to hide, right? Or does he?

2. How will Billy attack Kevin Sidella if he finds out his well-paid campaign handmaiden has been putting bullet after bullet in his head? After all, Sidella never cheated on his wife. Therefore,he must be a reliable witness for the prosecution.

3. I don't remember seeing anything ever written about Manzo turning rat to save his wife. In fact, I have never seen anything ever written about any deal Rachel Manzo may or may not have. She should have dumped him, but conjecture on why Manzo cut a deal is simply that -- conjecture.

4. Is spending time on the taxpayers' dime defending DeWeese on blogs a misuse of taxpayer money? I cannot for the life of me see any legislative value to that type of activity, certainly nothing of value to the taxpayers. Somebody had better consult Bill Chadwick for that answer lest they get arrested.

Anyone who knows DeWeese can already see the signs of desperation. It is comical. He knows his day is coming, otherwise he would not be out there claiming "I made mistakes" to Podunk newspaper editorial boards (Sorry Paul Sunyak, don't mean to denigrate your former employer.)

DeWeese employees who spend their time monitoring blogs would be really well-served it they spent their time updating their resumes.


Anonymous said... a clock that can go both ways within a House or Courtroom.

It seems you know far more about what is being testified to, than most, and that my friend is against the law if there is a leak in the grand jury, and you may be under oath one day too!

Manzo has turned on all Democrats to date, he is not doing it to save himself. Mike is not a Rat either, but a man caught in a tough place that forced him to do things he is no longer proud of after years of public service.

The American people that sit on juries, are very keen on what happens after hearing, seeing, and thinking about all the evidence.

Deweese did the right thing no matter what anybody says, cover up is not an option, Corbett will do the right thing too.

Anonymous said...

This isn't a story about vengeance, it's about correcting a wrong, a noble attempt to seek justice.

DeWeese, Corbett, Chadwick, and Fina are modest men, who possesses a hidden courage to do what is right.

Curt Bois

Ugarte said...

In order to make our points, we put source material or verified news items on CasablancaPA. Some of you folks don't seem to be looking at it. Please go back to the link in this post to the email where DeWeese is supervising and directing his caucus employees to work on his campaign on state time using state resources. In fact, this particular email subject is how "Special Leadership Account" funds were used for campaign advertising. It is unbelievable that Corbett would ignore it, hundreds like it and hours of testimony from House Democratic staff. Manzo is a rat. Corbett, Fina, Chadwick and DeWeese are punks.

Anonymous said...

The big problem is there are far more emails that overcome the few on the Special Leadership Account.

The Second problem is Chadwick's Investigation caught Veon & Company setting up various secret accounts without DeWeese signature, knowledge, and did not even include DeWeese Campaign Emails to voters, showing it was all kept from DeWeese.

The Third problem is AG Findings found DeWeese was the only Lawmaker using his Campaign Phones and Resources separate from State Phones and Resources.

The Fourth problem is Mike Manzo admitted in front of witnesses he kept things from DeWeese, worked with Veon & Company, apologized, and has turned State Witness to cut down his sentencing and that of his wife, that he betrayed too before and after marriage.

The Fifth problem is the person that brought Manzo on board for the HDC and made Chief Of Staff for the Majority Leader was Veon. Manzo was working for Veon knowing far more details than ever reporting to DeWeese.

The Sixth problem is that Veon and Senator LaValle set up almost the exact Non-Profit Type Organization that Senator Fumo was using for years.

The seventh problem is Manzo wife was assigned to LaGrotta but never reported to LaGrotta that started all of these investigations when he was caught using his sister and niece on the payroll and was a State Witness all along after pleading Guilty.

The Eighth problem is too many wives and husbands and guys and dolls friends were actually working as teams of organizers but decided to pay themselves huge bonuses.

The Ninth problem is Attorney Foreman is dead on right, trying to separate Citizen Service from campaigning is very difficult in any governmental organization.

The Tenth problem is Corbett only investigated and indicted Democratic employees and released the information before any other investigations have been finished.

The Eleventh problem is Corbett may be playing more politics than just following the evidence and that is unfair in any investigation.

The Twelfth problem in today’s blog world, stories of why other investigations are not taking place can turn into front page and media lead in on 6 o'clock news. If Corbett thinks this the end, he is mistaken; it will be just the beginning.

Judge races, long-term leases, and campaign donation seem to come together where it is against the law to even discuss or participate in political campaigning for judicial employees.

Signor Ferrari said...

1. Don't you think the "big problem" is that DeWeese himself was the one who determined what e-mails to turn over to the AG? What a surprise that only a few that implicate him slipped through!

2. Everyone knows not a dime of caucus money was spent without DeWeese's authorization. Not even the most slavering DeWeese sycophant believes any differently.

3. It may be that's what the AG found, but even the mighty Corbett can't find what he ain't looking for.

4. So sayeth DeWeese. But Manzo also said the exact opposite in court. What to believe? And Manzo's sex life is between him and his wife; DeWeese only exposed the affair to try to innoculate himself against whatever Manzo might say later.

5. That's a pretty blatant lie. Is that what DeWeese is saying now?

6. Veon and LaValle are hardly the only legislators besides Fumo that set up similar non-profits. See blog post: "Who's Next?"

7. So sayeth the disgraced and cornered rat LaGrotta.

8. See #2.

9. Attorney Foreman may be the first big fish in history who was allowed to plea in exchange for testimony against his subordinates. Corbett is clearly bent on making legal history!

10. Yep.

11. I think we know that for certain.

12. Yep again.

It's interesting that the DeWeese defenders are starting to cast a little criticism Corbett's way. Wonder what is prompting that...?

Anonymous said...

Isn't it an amazing coincidence how the attacks on Manzo's character have started to heat up now that we know Manzo is going before the grand jury? Nice try, anonymous DeWeese staffers!

Anonymous said...

Wait I am to believe that Mike Manso cheated on his fiancée, betrayed his wife, and decided to plea guilty and turn in fellow Democrats, but is not helping his wife Rachael?

Are you asking us to believe that Rachael Manso with her own Indictment of deciding what people should have been given bonuses as she went from a salary of $40,000 a year to $89,000 in 2 years not including the bonuses awarded to herself?

If Manso abandoned his wife and is not helping her cut a plead deal for exchange for his testimony to name more Democrats for the AG Office to prosecute, than I guess he does not care about anybody or anything anymore. After all, they will always have Harrisburg, even though it may not be Paris!

The AG Office using Husband against Wife or Husbands to help their wives to save them, are deals that need scrutiny.

Anonymous said...

I love watching Democrats point fingers at each other, blaming each other, and Republican prepare to go out and win elections, threw selective proecutions.

Anonymous said...

"Manzo defamation kick," only one problem with defamation, truth is an absolute defense against such an accusation. Look it up!

If Corbett is relying on Manzo to finger other people, the finger may end up being pointed at Corbett in a circular fashion of fairness.

Anonymous said...

DeWeese never exposed the MAnzo Affair, when DeWeese and even Veon Staffers never knew about the lease of the Cigar Shop as kept secret by Veon.

Even the Owner of teh Cigar Shop testified he only learned the B.I.G. was leasing it before he had Veon sign it.

Veon's own Staffer asked him why they are paying for Cable TV in Cigar Shop?

Only Manzo and Veon ever went there along with some campaigners, all in the Grand Jury Findings.

So, we know Deweese could have not known, and only Veon knew, and Manzo knew because he moved the girl in there.

Now you know the rest of the story!

Anonymous said...

Let me get this straight. First, this website says DeWeese and Corbett made a secret deal to make Corbett Governor so has not to indict DeWeese?

Then it says Corbett is making these investigations partisan political attacks and revenge with bias justice?

Then it says Newspapers are not publishing all the facts they are given outside the Grand Jury Findings?

Then they say “I believe” is proof or “It Seems” to be is fact?

Then it says Manzo is ok to point fingers at DeWeese and other Democrats after being caught with a huge creditability problem to save himself but not his wife?

Now it says we have DeWeese Staffers attacking Corbett now that Manzo is fingering DeWeese?

Then it blames Corbett for not prosecuting Republicans but wants him to prosecute more Democrats?

Does this sound reasonable or desperate to you, as I read it!

I think DeWeese did his job when he investigated his own staff and HDC by bringing in an Inspector General in Chadwick and they cooperated with the AG Office on what they found and fired Manzo & Company and admitted mistakes but not wrongdoing based on what was kept from them as admitted by Manzo.

I think Corbett did his job by reviewing all the evidence, checking it again.

There cannot be any deals with DeWeese since DeWeese never had the power to make him Governor. When DeWeese asked 200 employees to cooperate with the AG Office that was not a sign of a guilty man, yet when staffers caught with crimes and admitted crimes now implicate DeWeese, well, something is rotten in Denmark! This is what I think they are saying to Corbett, how can one ask for an investigation and then become the target after he found out the wrong doing?

The people caught in wrongdoing were turned in by fellow Campaign Workers that turned on them as Sate Witnesses, Immunity Grantees, and Hidden Informants.

Anonymous said...

I'm not prophetic, nor so introspective that I can make sense of the past, the present or the future.

All I know is that DeWeese makes me want to vomit. And not just a little bit in my mouth kind. The projectile kind that comes from the gnarly deep within and spews like a geiser.

Anonymous said...

DeWeese is vile. Just when we can stop gagging over his last antic he does something to make us gag even harder. A Democrat paling around with right wing nut jobs. And the whole world has to answer right now. Just to tell you once again. Who's bad?

Anonymous said...

That "Podunk" newspaper in Uniontown played a critical role in getting Pennsylvania to update its antiquated open records law, among other good works.
You should have a healthier respect for the Fourth Estate. But you don't; you've recently critized the Tribune-Review, the Post-Gazette and now the Patriot-News for not seeing things the way you want them to be seen.
But then again, maybe you think they are "Podunk" newspapers, too.
Thank God for a free and independent press, whose body of work work has far more integrity than the hacksters hiding behind CasablancaPA.

Signor Ferrari said...

Excuse us, anonymous-poster-slamming-other-people-for-being-anonymous, but it was another anonymous poster who called the Herald Standard a podunk newspaper, and not Team CasablancaPA.

We're the ones who called Paul Sunyak a hypocritical whore.

Anonymous said...

I still feel and believe and the public will come to know there is little to no difference between campaigning and constituent services.

It is not not a fine line, it is a gray line, and if not invisible and the public knows it.

I am so sadden by good state employees caught up in between doing a job they have been doing for years and now being told all of you are criminals because you worked on state time.

Yes, mistakes were made, yes monies misspent, but all of that can be admitted and repaid, and I am tired of see ing just Democrats come against one another, just because the investigations on Republicans has been slow.

It is unfair, dirty and wrong and it will not yield the results many Prosecutors think it will from a criminal standpoint, but it will change the political landscape and that is even more wrong.

Anonymous said...

Sorry to enter the game a little late here (I've been working), but I'd like to respond to Signor's comment that DeWeese was the one who decided what emails to turn over. I heard that DeWeese's emails were the ONLY legislator's emails turned over. Is that not true? I know Eachus worked hard to expand the pool but even Eachus' own emails were exempt from AG scrutiny. Does anyone know whether the AG looked at Eachus' emails? If his emails were exempt, why would they be? After all, he ran HDCC, the heart of the campaign operation, right?

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