Unsurprisingly, the only reported targets of this grand jury have been Democrats.
The Post-Gazette reports that Corbett has Democratic Congressman and Philadelphia Democratic Party Chair Bob Brady his is sights:
"The complaint also declares that when members of Teamster Local 250, which represents turnpike employees in the western half of the state, ceased donating money to the Philadelphia Democratic Committee, a turnpike manager named Melvin Shelton, 'instructed plaintiff to deny all grievances brought on behalf of employees represented by Local 250.' Mr. Kovac's complaint also says he told turnpike Executive Director Joseph Brimmeier that he believed Mr. Shelton, in fact, did little work for the commission 'but rather, worked to further the interests of Congressman [Robert] Brady, the Philadelphia Democratic Committee and Teamsters Local No. 77.'" (Post Gazette 10/30/2009)And, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review has been tipped off that Democratic State Representative Tony DeLuca could be in hot water with the grand jury:
"Earlier this year, Peggy Denham, who works for the state as a municipal auditor, said she testified that Rep. Tony DeLuca, D-Penn Hills, helped his daughter Deborah Brinker get a job with the Turnpike Commission, and arranged jobs for other relatives with public agencies...According to Denham, DeLuca arranged for Brinker to work for the turnpike by persuading Penn Hills council to hire Bonnie Brimmeier as its solicitor. She is the sister of Joe Brimmeier, the commission's executive director." (Tribune Review 10/30/09)Yet, Corbett refuses to use his grand jury to investigate allegedly shoddy work and fleecing of the Turnpike by the construction contractors Allan C. Myers, Inc. Instead, the FBI is handling the investigation. (Inquirer 10/31/09)
Why would Corbett ignore malfeasance by a Pennsylvania contractor who is allegedly ripping-off the Pennsylvania Turnpike to the tune of tens of millions of dollars?
It could be because the owner of Allan C. Myers, Inc. is a major -- no, make that massive -- Republican campaign contributor.
Not only has A. Ross Myers contributed $15,000 directly to Corbett in just the last two years (we're still waiting to see what he's given to Corbett in 2009), but he's also sent hundreds of thousands of dollars to Republican interests in every corner of the state since 2004:
$300,000 to Pennsylvania Future Fund (Bob Asher's PAC)
$27,848 to Friends of Joe Scarnati
$1,000 to Friends of Bob Mensch
$3,250 to Lloyd Smucker for Senate 5/20/09
$8,250 to Friends for Jay Moyer
$1,000 to Friends of Sheryl DeLozier
$45,000 to Friends of John Perzel
$2,000 to Friends of Dave Reed
$8,500 to Friends of Kate Harper
$1,000 to Friends of Tom Ellis
$52,500 to Friends of Rob Wonderling
$15,500 to Friends of Bruce Castor
$6,000 to Friends of Jim Matthews
$100,000 to Lynn Swann for Governor
$2,500 to Friends of Senator Jubelirer
$2,500 to Friends of Senator Brightbill
$35,000 to House Republican Campaign Committee
$1,000 to John Rafferty for Senate
$1,000 to Bob Godshall for Legislature
After seeing this list of GOP largess, it makes sense that Corbett would ignore shennanigans by this Republican donor and instead pursue Congressman Brady and Rep. DeLuca.
It doesn't end at punting an investigation of Allan A. Myers to the Feds.
Corbett has definitively shown that his investigation of the Turnpike isn't going to lead to any headaches for Republicans by how his gubernatorial campaign is raising money.
Just this week, John Micek with the Morning Call reported that a sponsor of a high-dollar Corbett fundraising event in Philadelphia was Timothy J. Carson...the Vice-Chairman of the Turnpike and major Republican poo-bah. (Capitol Ideas 11/6/2009)
Just how serious a probe of the Turnpike is Corbett conducting if he is rubbing elbows (connected to fists full of campaign cash) with one of the very persons he is supposedly investigating?