Saturday, August 29, 2009
"Do I believe a lot of people out there are saying things that they're going to have to eat their words? Absolutely."
So sayeth Gubernatorial Candidate Tom Corbett in an interview with the Associated Press.
Could Corbett be talking about li'l ol' us? We can't wait to find out which of our tasty words were going to have to eat.
Will he charge Bill DeWeese with crimes related to bonuses and use of state resources for campaigning and disprove our theory about a secret immunity agreement?
Will he indict Steve Stetler, finally laying to rest the question of how Stetler avoided responding to a grand jury subpoena?
Will his next round of indictments shock the conscience because of all the money involved? (Presumably that amount would have to be more than the estimated $10 million the Bonusgate investigation already has cost the taxpayers.)
If Corbett thinks charging a token Republican or two qualifies as making us eat our words, he hasn't been reading us very carefully. (Also, kudos on allowing petty grudges against anonymous bloggers to influence prosecutorial decisions. The citizens who elected him must feel very reassured.)
We do think it's awfully courteous of Corbett to give those lawmakers who aren't indicted the opportunity to express their gratitude: "...he said he might accept donations from sitting lawmakers once targets of the investigation are clear."
Corbett seems to think he can escape accusations of politicking by laying off responsibility onto noble "career prosecutors" who are above such grubby concerns: "... these guys would scream bloody murder. They'd go right to the federal government and say, 'Hey, there's something wrong here.' I know they would. I would expect them to."
Oh, indeed. They're all just dying to piss off the guy who might be the next governor. And of course career prosecutors are notoriously independent of their politician bosses. Just ask Michele A. Brown, the assistant U.S. attorney who accepted a $46,000 loan from her boss, New Jersey gubernatorial candidate Chris Christie. Look how eager all the career prosecutors who served under Alberto Gonzales were to challenge their boss after colleagues were fired for insufficient loyalty to the Republican party.
Did these career prosecutors upon whom Corbett relies to keep him honest "go right to the federal government and say, 'Hey, there's something wrong here,'" when Corbett declined to prosecute Republican York County District Attorney Stan Rebert or Republican Bedford County District Attorney William Higgins?
(Ooh, maybe those are the words we're going to have to eat. Maybe he's going to announce indictments of Rebert and Higgins!)
At this late date, Corbett could indict every member of the House and Senate Republican caucuses tomorrow and it wouldn't prove that he hasn't been motivated by politics. We guarantee that no one will scream louder that he or she was targeted for political reasons than a Republican legislator who faces indictment.
If Corbett truly were motivated by anything other than his own political ambition he would have appointed a special prosecutor in January of 2007. He didn't. Because he's not.