Wednesday, December 30, 2009


We bet Attorney Matt Haverstick wishes he could get back this letter he sent to Jeff Coleman on December 22. (tip of the hat to
"It has come to my attention that recently you falsely accused the [Senate Republican] Caucus and its memebers engaging in rampant political activity with state funds...Your allegations are made with willful disregard of whether there is any truth whatsoever to your claims and thus are defamatory under Pennsylvania law."
Well, Mr. Haverstick, how about these apples?
"The investigation, confirmed last night by Jerry McDevitt, who is representing Ms. Orie, apparently began a day before the November election when an intern at the senator's district office in the North Hills complained to the district attorney's office that political calls were being made there on behalf of state Supreme Court nominee Joan Orie Melvin, the senator's sister.

On Friday,detectives executed a search warrant at Ms. Orie's district office at the La Casa Blanca Building on McKnight Road. Earlier in the month, detectives had placed Ms. Orie's office under surveillance, Mr. McDevitt said.

He also complained that, at one juncture, investigators had followed his client to church.

'It was pretty much a computer raid,' Mr. McDevitt said. He said detectives seized computers assigned to office staff, several laptops and the office computer server, leaving Ms. Orie's own computer in place.

Sources with first-hand knowledge of the inquiry said the district attorney's office has received complaints of fundraising and other political calls from the senator's district office. Additionally, a college intern brought complaints of improper political activity." (Post-Gazette 12/24/09)
Perhaps Haverstick should consider sending an "I'm sorry" bouquet of flowers to Coleman. This all sounds so very familiar:
"Democratic attorney general candidate John Morganelli's charge that House Republicans probably destroyed records in the investigation of legislative bonuses is borderline slander, the state House GOP leader said Wednesday.'When Mr. Morganelli makes these accusations, he's stepping pretty close to the line of slander,' said House Republican Leader Sam Smith, R-Punxsutawney. Smith said he is considering suing Morganelli after the Nov. 4 election...Smith said Morganelli essentially accused members of his caucus of destroying evidence. 'I kind of took it that way, and I took offense to it,' he said." (Tribune Review 10/16/08)
Fast-forward a year later:
"While the computer contracts likely passed the $10 million mark in what the attorney general believes was misused by Mr. Perzel and his co-conspirators, Mr. Corbett told reporters that was not the thing that bothered him the most. 'If there's one thing in all of this that annoys me? Obstruction's the worst. You're interfering with people finding out what truly happened." (Post Gazette 11/12/09)
Whoops! It is like a bad joke that people keep telling over and over to one another.

Just as with Smith feigning righteous indignity over whether or not Corbett's botched handling of the investigation presented his caucus the opportunity to destroy evidence, it is ridiculous for Haverstick or anyone in Harrisburg to make the claim that Senate Republicans did no campaign work on state time using state resources. Everyone knows how active former Senate staffer Mike Long was for over 20 years in the Capitol offices doing campaign work.

Even Orie's lawyer said there is no politician that can pass the stringent zero tolerance policy Corbett has apparently decided to implement selectively:

"There's not a politician in this state that could pass a zero tolerance test." (Tribune Review 12/30/09)

We couldn't agree more with Orie's counsel. In fact, based on Corbett's own campaign cell phone bills, it is incontrovertible that Corbett himself can't live up to the very standards to which he is holding those he chooses to prosecute.

Everyone in Harrisburg should make a New Year's resolution to not be "shocked, shocked" whenever anyone is accused of using state resources for campaign work. Time after time, it is proven true that "not a politician in this state [can] pass a zero tolerance test."

The real crime and scandal is how gubernatorial candidate Corbett arbitrarily selects those he chooses to indict.


Anonymous said...

This blog is very interesting and informative.

Anonymous said...

It is amazing but the epublicans look like they felt embolden to still break the Habay Laws by the Superior Court as Democrats were being rounded up, arrested, charged, all by the Republican Attorney General.

Yet, AG Corbett's Office could not find the time to investigate his Senator Friends over 4 years.

The Republicans are now caught red-handed or better yet Red-HENed in the Orie Sisters.

The Swearing in of all New State Judges should be put on hold until all investigations are in from the Zappala Grand Juries.

This is just warming up! Wait until all the information is released.

The person who told Corbett to begin this witchhunt may in fact be sacrificedas the real culprit of decent, no one burns witches anymore, but many careers go down in Bonafires of the Vanties.

Anonymous said...

Corbett is toast count on it, burn by his own people, when the time comes to roast him.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...Corbett is toast count on it, burn by his own people, when the time comes to roast him.
January 2, 2010 4:53 AM

Wow, just like the people he is investigating. Mike Long on Deck in Dormont!

Anonymous said...

The Auditor General needs to do an Audit on the Office of the Attorney General Phone Accounts to determine if they worked on campaigns on State Time.

Better yet, AG Corbett should hand over these Phone records to the Auditor general and Media and Ethics Groups to prove he has nothing to hide.

The Open Records Law should make this very legal for the public to gather easily.

Frank Dermody should make this part of his Reforms and advocate it too, along with Tony Krastek Phone Records both Home and Work to prove no connections and nothing to hide.

In fact, the Phone records of all State Employees should be put on the Internet for any review anytime.

Now that is true reform, but has it been put in place by Dermody?

Anonymous said...

I think the following should be investigated by the OAG this week, the OAG can grb Mike Long right now and get to the bottom of this sooner not later:

Supreme Court Justice-elect Joan Orie Melvin's campaign headquarters effectively was 121 State St. in Harrisburg, the office of longtime former state Senate aide Mike Long, top Republicans said Tuesday.

An attorney for Orie yesterday denied she directed or condoned campaign activity in her Senate office on Melvin's behalf.

Orie, the Senate's third-highest ranking Republican, is under criminal investigation by the Allegheny County District Attorney's Office.

Long is the former majority staff administrator for ex-Senate President Pro Tempore Robert Jubelirer, R-Altoona.

Long left state government to head his own lobbying and consulting firm in 2007.

Mike Barley, spokesman for the Republican Party of Pennsylvania, identified "121 State St.," the address of Long's firm, as Melvin's headquarters during the Supreme Court campaign.

Reached by telephone, Long would not comment.

Campaign finance records show Orie Melvin's campaign paid his firm $24,000 on Nov. 2 for consulting.

Melvin won a 53-47 percent victory over Democrat Jack Panella on Nov. 3 after a bitter campaign that could become the most expensive in the court's history.

The two sides spent a combined $4.5 million.

Republicans will hold a majority on the court for the first time since 2006.

The court could be called upon to decide congressional redistricting in 2011.

The day before the election, an intern from the University of Pittsburgh working at Orie's McCandless office went to Zappala's office to allege campaign work occurred there for Melvin.

Authorities haven't released the intern's identity or the exact nature of the allegations.

Orie wasn't the only Senate Republican leader tied to Melvin's campaign.

"I think I was chair of her campaign ... maybe just the fundraising chair," said Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati, R-Jefferson County.

Although Long managed the campaign -- primarily the paid-TV and radio ads -- state Sen. Kim Ward said state GOP Chairman Rob Gleason directed the effort to elect Republican judges to state appellate courts, with a special emphasis on the Supreme Court seat.

Gleason declined to comment and referred questions to Barley.

Ward, R-Hempfield, said the race was critical on two levels. She said party officials realized the party controlling the court would be in a good position if redistricting became an issue for the court to decide.

But Republicans also needed to make a stand in a state that increasingly has swayed Democrats in recent statewide elections.

"This race was really important to Rob Gleason. We were losing statewide races and he needed to show we could win statewide," Ward said. "That he put people on the ground mattered a lot. The state party was key here."

Anonymous said...

Where was Corbett's OAG 6 years ago after Complaints were filed????

The Republicans and AG Corbett expects us to believe that Jane Orie is going to lead Reforms in the Legsilature?????

Now read what she did when she campaigned....These are the Brownshirt Nazi Tactics used against Hitler's politicals foes, but Corbett never investigated her, never found the time after c4 years?....?...? Can we trust such people?

A former campaign aide to state Sen. Jane Clare Orie, who is under scrutiny by a county grand jury, says, "I know pretty much about how the Ories operate -- let's put it that way.

Let's just say they have a long history of dirty campaigning," said Louise Bradley, a Republican committeewoman in McCandless.

Complaints about Ms. Orie's political style have a long history in McCandless, and Ms. Bradley has been a longtime critic of that approach.

In an interview yesterday, Ms. Bradley, a former volunteer aide to Jane Orie, spoke of being encouraged to uproot yard signs and, on one occasion, said she was instructed to make a late-night call to harass a local woman who had endorsed Ms. Orie's 1996 opponent, Mike Smith. She said she refused.

William and Lisa Baierl, said last night that both a male and a female called their house calling Mr. Baierl, who ran against Jane Orie as an independent candidate in 1996, a "baby killer."

Mrs. Baierl said the name "Orie" came up on her home's caller ID.

"I can't recall if there was a first name listed on the caller ID but there was an Orie name listed on the caller ID.

It would be a woman or a man stating that my husband was a baby killer," Mrs. Baierl said. "I just thought it was so ironic that they wouldn't even think of caller ID. I would say 'Who is this, what are you talking about?' They would just hang up."

Ms. Bradley yesterday said she had spoken with both Ms. Orie and Judge Orie Melvin about calls and that they appeared surprised when she warned them that some telephones in the region had features that allowed them to see the name of the incoming caller.

She said that on the weekend before the 1996 election, she was with Ms. Orie and Judge Orie Melvin and they pulled up to a 7-Eleven in Ingomar and one of the women handed her a quarter for a nearby pay telephone.

"[Joan] said to go and call this woman and call her a baby killer. I said, 'No, I'm not going to do that. That's sick,' " Ms. Bradley said.

An election six years later saw complaints from opponents that Ms. Orie was allowing partisan campaign work in her office.

When Judge Orie Melvin sought a seat on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court in 2003, her opponent was Allegheny County Judge Max Baer.

Mr. Baer's campaign manager at the time, John Marshall, said his staff spotted people carrying political yard signs for Judge Orie Melvin from Jane Orie's state senate office in the North Hills.

"They would distribute yard signs from her state Senate district office and we had pictures of people coming out of the office with signs," said Mr. Marshall.

"Everyone knew she was actively campaigning for her sister from her district office," Mr. Marshall said.

Anonymous said...

When I read the inner workings of Joan and Jane Orie with Robert Jubelirer and Mike Long, I see the same in fighting that read about in Third Reich.

Political Tactics used to intimidate opponents, smear them, and then claim they are doing it for a more noble goal, their election, or re-elections.

Jane Orie should resign now and Joan Orie Melvin should not be sworn in until this investigation is over and she is indicted or pleads or acquitted.

Both sisters should be ashamed of themselves and so should their entire family.


As for the Republicans like Jimmy Kool Aid Boy Roddey, Scar Face Scarnati, and Corbett's silent coward Bosom Buddy Booby Jubelirer it is downright laughable.

Anonymous said...

Bonusgate pleas set for Wednesday
By: Staff and wire reports
Associated Press
Saturday January 2, 2009 10:45 PM

HARRISBURG — The former personnel director for Pennsylvania’s House Democrats is set to plead guilty in a wide-ranging probe involving legislative bonuses.

Earl Mosley will plead guilty Wednesday in Dauphin County Court along with six other defendants. That’s according to Mosley’s attorney, Matthew Gover.

The 54-year-old Mosley will plead guilty to two counts of conflict of interest and one count of conspiracy related to his alleged involvement in directing bonus payments to himself and other staffers.

According to court records, others scheduled to enter pleas include Monaca native Michael Manzo, 40, former chief of staff to former Majority Leader Bill DeWeese. Manzo is expected to plead guilty to conspiracy, theft and conflict of interest.

Manzo’s wife, Rachel, 29, the former executive director of the House Democratic Policy Committee, is also expected to enter a plea; the details of that plea weren’t available Saturday.

Four other defendants are set for a jury trial scheduled to begin Jan. 19. Among those defendants are former state Rep. Mike Veon, formerly of West Mayfield, and one of his former aides, Annamarie Perretta-Rosepink of Beaver Falls.

Last month, Veon’s defense attorney Dan Raynak said he would ask for a continuance because prosecutors recently turned over a large number of documents. There hadn’t been any movement toward a continuance as of Saturday, according to court documents.

The charges are a result of a wide-ranging probe into legislative bonuses by Attorney General Tom Corbett.

Corbett alleges that about $1.3 million in public funds was used to reward Democrat staffers with secret bonuses for helping with hotly contested House campaigns.

Part II Comments:

Anonymous said...

Part II Comments:

DaveL.M.63_09, 01-03-10, 8:49 am
A new year and,now we have the opportunity to take out the trash and start some early spring cleaning. Some say "all politics is local" So let us start here at home, and finally take a stand against these "criminals"

enufff, 01-03-10, 9:11 am

loyalty2 none, 01-03-10, 9:31 pm
The truth will come out. Mike Veon will be fully exonerated. Tom "Hackapotomus" Corbett will be shown to be a political opportunist who attacked our man Mike Veon to keep Beaver County from getting much-needed economic development funds, and to loose the union-backed Democratic Party grip on Harrisburg politics. Mike Veon will assure that high wage union jobs are the norm in Beaver County. Mike has the full backing and endorsement of the Beaver County Labor Council. All working people in our community should support and cast their ballots for the full slate of candidates endorsed by the BCLC for better working conditions, guaranteed benefits, and longer vacations. The wasted rein of the sod busters is swiftly coming to an end.

BCisaJOKE, 01-04-10, 2:46 pm
So because he has the endorsement of the labor union that's supposed to mean something? In case you haven't noticed, the economy sucks. You're lucky to have a job and it's the union mentality of entitlement that is half of what's wrong with the employment front in this country. Perhaps if you were paid on a merit basis instead of a contract basis you'd actually work instead of sitting back because of your collective bargaining guarantees.

Anonymous said...

free veon!