It effectively doused the flicker of indignation ignited by activists' "1,000 Days of Bonusgate" demonstration, gently fanned by WHTM's investigative report about how much time state employees spend on the phone with Gubernatorial Candidate Tom Corbett's campaign staff.
We understand: no one wants to be standing on the Capitol steps denouncing a lack of Republican indictments at the very moment Republicans are indicted.
Tom Corbett gets it, too. He's been getting away with it for more than two years.
What we find fascinating is the very idea that that Republican indictments will somehow absolve Corbett of politicizing his office. If anything, he is further condemned.
Politically, Corbett has to indict Republicans. That fact alone - and it is a fact - should disqualify him from exercising the power of his office.
From a political perspective, indicting Democrats was merely a good idea. Indicting Republicans is a necessity.
When he announces those indictments, Corbett says we'll understand why his investigation of Republicans took so long. We already understand why. It's a tricky calculation, determining how many victims he has to choose to maintain political viability, how far up the hierarchy he has to reach, which of his supporters he can afford to alienate, how long can he hold out on his announcement to achieve maximum publicity ... it's all very complicated.
We've no doubt that Republicans have engaged in political activity using state resouces. But that's almost beside the point. Just as the Democratic indictments were, the conscience-shocking Republican indictments of Biblical proportion will be based on making maxium splash while doing as little damage to the actual power structure as possible.