Sunday, May 23, 2010


Let's just suppose, for argument's sake, that our li'l ol' blog here were being written by a "contrite" defendant. Would his contrition blind him to Tom Corbett's behavior?

Would a contrite defendant not wonder why e-mails and testimony exposing Bill DeWeese's involvement in bonuses, "LCOMM" and the Nader and Romanelli petition challenges didn't lead Corbett to indict DeWeese in connection with bonuses, "LCOMM" and the Nader and Romanelli petition challenges. Mario Cattabiani and Angela Couloumbis of the Philadelphia Inquirer wondered, and we're pretty sure no one's indicted them. (Yet.)

Would a defendant's contrition change the fact that Corbett didn't subpoena House Republicans until at least eight months into his well-publicized, leaky-as-a-sieve investigation, and only after after critical editorials appeared on Capitolwire and in The Morning Call? That he and his campaign manager met secretly with John Perzel just weeks before the subpoenas were issued? Or that Corbett himself green-lighted a computer changeover months before issuing the subpoenas? The reporters who noted these curious facts are not convicted felons. (Yet.)

Would a contrite defendant fail to notice that Corbett sent agents from the Attorney General's office to intimidate a state representative who criticized him in a newspaper article? Chris Brennan of the Philadelphia Daily News noticed, and he's not a criminal defendant. (Yet.)

And we suppose nobody but a unrepentant defendant would wonder how Corbett's investigation of the Senate Republicans failed to uncover the campaign operation Jane Orie allegedly ran out of her district office? Laura Vecsey of the Patriot-News wonders, and Corbett hasn't charged her with a felony. (Yet.)

The hundreds of phone calls between Corbett's state staff, on state phones during state time, and campaign workers on their campaign-paid phones, would be of no interest to a contrite defendant? Matt Kemeney of the Patriot-News seems interested, and he's neither a contrite nor unrepentant convict. (Yet.)

If Corbett thinks its okay to put his critics in jail as long as he's convicted them of a real crime first, how short a slide is it to pursuing criminal charges against people because they are critics? Keep in mind, Brett Cott was on record calling Corbett's investigation a "witch hunt" nine months before he was arrested, and a month before Bill DeWeese fired him.

We are outraged, of course, by Corbett's attempt to learn the identity of a critic in order to punish the critic with jail time. But we are baffled by his argument that anything on this blog demonstrates a "lack of contrition." Does contrition make you stupid?

Thanks again to "TN2010" for the illustration.


Anonymous said...

keep up the work whoever is in charge of this blog. you guys/girls are doing swell.. but could someone tell me HOW the article in the paper a few weeks ago (John Paul Jones court test. where he talks about fundraising for Mr. Eachus in the capital bldg on state time) has not come up again....? why is it being ignored!? Mr. Eachus must be pretty good friends with Tommy C. hmmmmm I'm just saying.....

Anonymous said...

I don't practice criminal law, so I may be completely ignorant of how this works, but what I want to know is this. Why doesn't Corbett's staff question Mr. Cott when he allocutes as part of the plea bargain?

If Mr. Cott's plea requires contrition, the Commonwealth's Attorney General's office presumably has the right to question the sincerity of his allocution. If his allocution includes something that the Attorney General's office feels is in legally significant conflict with statements Mr. Cott may or may not have made in public fora, the AG's office can ask the court for permission to pursue that angle.

The point I'm making is this does not require the subpoena power, particularly not when the subpoena power is being applied so broadly and inelegantly. Unless, Mr. Corbett doesn't want to air this issue in a court of law but in the court of public opinion. In which case, I'd say he's already lost.

Anonymous said...

Cott did not plead guilty, he was convicted, so he does not allocute.

It takes some serious balls to say "I should be given probation, I've learned my lesson" while insulting the sentencing judge on a blog.

It's not just Cott here - Veon posts too.

Anonymous said...

Who insulted a judge?

Rick Blaine said...

Uh, dummy, Cott is in jail and Veon probably doesn't know what a blog is. But balls? Yes, those are in ample supply. Your fucktard candidate is going to lose in November.

Anonymous said...

I don't think anyone insulted the judge. I think the judge insulted the public. And should apologize!

Just as Tommy Corbett is an insult to the office that he holds. He should resign as a candidate and as attorney general and save the public the task of recalling him.

Anonymous said...

The public is slowly seeing through the merry band of Pharisees that wear black robes and pontificate from their plush chambers, while accruing larger pensions every time a ticket is issued.

The justice system needs to reform and return to days when judges were respected because they served the public and not further their own interests.

Anonymous said...

Pennsylvania needs to return to basics.