Sunday, October 18, 2009


What kind of Governor would Tom Corbett make, when he obviously has no clue how the legislature operates?

If there is a single exchange that encapsulates the depth and breadth of Corbett's gullibility, it is this excerpt from grand jury testimony:

Q Now, I want to show you an e-mail that the grand jury had not seen yet, and this is dated December 17th, of '04. It's from you to William DeWeese. Subject: Thank you. It's addressed to Representative Deweese, Representative Veon, and Mike. Mike being --
A Mike Manzo.
Q Right. And although in the subject line -- I don't want to touch this because I think that -- it's to DeWeese and Veon and carbon copy to Manzo, correct?
A Yes.
Q And then the line below the subject line says Representative DeWeese, Representative Veon and Mike. I can't thank you enough for the bonus for campaigning. I am speechless, as most of us are. Thank you. I hope you both have a nice holiday weekend. Again, thank you for the opportunity of being part of your staff. If you look above that, it appears that there's a response from William DeWeese to you, carbon copy no one, December 17th, '04, 2:17:45 p.m. Capital U, Capital R, welcome, correct?
A Yes.
Q And I'm assuming of the people who communicate not verbally and through
machines UR means the [same] as y-o-u, space, a-r-e, correct?
A Yes.
Q You remember this e-mail?
A Yes.
Q Did you send his e-mail?
A Yes.
Q Did you receive that response from what looks like

A Yes.

(Grand jury testimony of Karen Steiner, June 24, 2008)

By the time they questioned Steiner, investigators had seen the "smoking gun" emails that proved DeWeese knew about and approved of bonuses for campaigning. But Corbett apparently fell for DeWeese's incredible tale - not only that he didn't answer his own email, but that the person who did actually pretended to be DeWeese and was deliberately keeping the contents of DeWeese's own email a secret from him.

A reasonable person would've offered DeWeese the name of a competent psychotherapist at that point.

But Corbett bought it, possibly because it was sold to him by a Republican crony and campaign contributer, DeWeese's taxpayer-funded defense attorney Bill Chadwick. Imagine Corbett's shock when the Tribune-Review published the emails. The thinking world laughed uproriously at DeWeese's pathetic explanation and turned expectantly to Corbett. Oh noes! How could he admit he'd been duped?

Corbett's cluelessness regarding lege-world is further evident in his original Democrats-only investigation. Only after widespread accusations of partisanship did Corbett make any effort even to create the appearance of an investigation of Republicans. At that point, the horse was out of the barn. House Republicans already had replaced their computer servers and newspapers had been reporting the details of the investigation for months. The true embarrasment is not the partisanship that led to a one-sided investigation, but the ignorance that made him think he could get away with it. He's been playing catch-up to try to remedy that blunder ever since. He may be bound and determined now to charge a few Republicans just to change perceptions, but the prosecutions will suffer from his initial miscalculation.

Corbett is so ignorant of the ways of the legislature that he filed criminal charges against a former member for the routine use his contingency account. Even after the charges were filed, House comptroller Alexis Brown issued a memo clarifying that the practices Corbett considered felonious were still regarded by the House to be perfectly legal. Now what? Admit he was wrong, or file felony charges against every committee chair and member of leadership in the entire House? Our money's on withdrawing the charges when he thinks nobody's paying attention.

Corbett's profound ignorance of Capitol culture blinded him to the ramifications of Bonusgate's narrow focus. This isn't how he imagined he'd spend the opening weeks of his gubernatorial campaign. Here he is, figuring out how to manage the near-univiversal expectation of indictments against legislative leaders he'd had no intention of investigating in the first place. He has so little understanding of how the legislature operates and the culture of the Capitol that the response to his investigation caght him off-guard.

Whether he really believed politics in the Capitol was confined to a single legislator and a handful of staff, or he just believed he could sell that story to the voting public, he reveals a naïveté that would be embarassing in a first-year Capitol intern, much less a governor.


Anonymous said...

Since they know so much, why doesn't Signor Ferrari run for governor and Ugarte run for attorney general? Then they could run Pensylvania their own way. Ugarte could charge everyone in Pennsylvania with some sort of crime, and Signor Ferrari could then pardon those he felt weren't guilty, starting with all the Bonusgate defendants.
Then we could say that justice just isn't blind, it's deaf and dumb, too.
Guess who's WAY ahead in all the polls? Tom Corbett! Keep up the good work, guys. You are really having an impact.

Anonymous said...

It seems you have accepted that Mr. DeWeese will go unindicted; do not be so sure. Imagine the headlines (shock) if there are far more than a dozen indictments - including two former Speakers currently in office, and several from their staffs, along with more sitting and former legislators, perhaps Republican and Democrat. We shall see if there are obstruction charges against current Dem staff. Corruption charges against GOP computer staff. And do not presume it will not reach to one or more in the administration, contractors and perhaps the Nader petition law firm.

Anonymous said...

That's it? That's the so-called evidence on which you think the former House leader could be convicted beyond a reasonable doubt? One line among thousands and thousands of emails? Stop blaming the messenger - the guy who turned in the evidence - and look at those who actually committed the crimes.

Anonymous said...

Old News again by Team Casa targeting DeWeese with one Email.

Now put up all the Emails sent by Team (Charged With Crimes) Casa to all Legislators, do they number in what thousands or just a one or two?

Tell me, did any Legislator at anytime rate and grade staffers on how they campaigned and then were awarded bonuses for their campaign work, because Team (Indictees) Casa
did just that in emails.

Staffers running the HDCC Re-Election of Incumbents Campaign were alleged the same people rating, judging, finger pointing, and then recommending bonuses by them, of them and for them.

Manzo was smart he copped a plea because he knew what he did, Foreman followed, and Lavelle joined them. Manzo admitted in public he did things using DeWeese name without DeWeese knowing. Foreman has testified it is difficult to separate Constituent Service from campaigning and Pleaded Guilty. Lavelle admitted his job as assign by Veon was to raise money on State Time as directed and knew it was wrong.

Is it about time you put up those emails by, of, and for Team Casa that rated and paid out the bonuses without many of their Legislators Bosses not knowing.

Once everyone can see those emails, it is easy to discern those that did some campaign work on some state time versus those Team Casa Indictees that work all the time on campaigns on state time all of the time.

Or Is That The Kind Of Truth News Team Casa Avoids Here?

Anonymous said...

I thinks Tom Corbett has a pretty good idea of how the legislature SHOULD NOT operate - and that is, a merry band of Robin Hoods in the Democratic caucus should not have use $1.9 million of taxpayer money to be giving bonuses to employees for doing campaigns work.
I reads where Brett Cox gots a $25,000 bonus when all he supposably did was campaigns work. An they says he was making ninety thousand bucks a year to start with! That be almost 25% of his salary as a bonus. Sound like Brett Cox working on Wall Street, nots in the PA legislature.
It would take more than an intern to figure dis big scheme out. That is what Tom Corbett did and now they can't stands him.

Anonymous said...

Judging Juvenile Justice

Meanwhile, in Harrisburg, we saw the first hearings of the “Interbranch Commission on Juvenile Justice,” formed to figure out how our two disgraced judges could get away with so much for so long at the expense of children while no one noticed.

Our first three witnesses: State Sen. Lisa Baker, Luzerne County President Judge Chester Muroski, and State Rep. Todd Eachus.

Muroski spent most of his time justifying how he and other judges couldn’t see what was going on thanks to the secrecy of juvenile justice and then insisted he was the one who first suspected irregularities and contacted the FBI.

Baker and Eachus?

They helped craft the legislation that formed the commission, so they deserved a few words. And for Baker there seemed to be no risk.

She looks as far removed from the judge scandal as a person could be.

But Eachus may have done better to stay clear.

Not so long ago, he marched in lock-step with Attorney Robert Powell during the silly push for a massive cargo airport near Hazleton.

Eachus touted the expensive and iffy proposal at every turn, even after an independent study said it was as likely to succeed as boulder rolling up hill.

Powell was one of the three men behind the airport.

He and airport buddy Greg Zappala also built the juvenile detention center the disgraced judges filled in exchange for millions.

Powell paid or helped funnel much of that money to the judges, though he insists it was extortion.

Guilt by association? Of course not.

But having helped launch the commission, Eachus would do well to let it run its course without comment, lest he look like he’s trying to steer it.


Anonymous said...

As long as a candidate holds effective power of indictment over those he solicits for contributions it is tantamount to extortion.

Anonymous said...

Corbett broke no laws, what he is doing is enforcing the laws on the books.

CasabalancaPA has become crybabies more than men standing up for their character.

Bookem Dano!

Anonymous said...

Did anyone ever tell you guys that Justice was a lady? But I don't think her name is Mary Beth

bobguzzardi said...

AG Tom Corbett indicts Eachus and Perzel and I vote for him.

Anonymous said...

Look at my arms, you will find no party hand-cuff on them.