When we read the statement from Senate GOP hired gun Matthew Haverstick that evidence in the Jane Orie case was turned over "as part of a prearranged and cooperative effort," we couldn't help but reflect upon craven liar Bill DeWeese's "cooperative effort" with Gubernatorial Candidate Tom Corbett.
Believing he had nothing to fear from prosecutors, DeWeese turned over a massive cache of documents and emails to be used as evidence against his former colleague Mike Veon and others. He made at least a halfhearted effort to exclude some of the blatantly incriminating evidence, such as emails showing two of his top staffers coordinating political work with a state-paid contractor - emails that unfortunately for him turned up among the small amount of evidence gathered from other sources.
But a person who believes he has nothing to fear is a person who lets his guard down. Plenty of incriminating emails were among the evidence DeWeese himself turned over, including the smoking-gun "U R welcome" email in which he acknowledges awarding bonuses for campaign work.
DeWeese's sloppiness in voluntarily handing over evidence that incriminated himself did not have direct legal consequences - even after public disclosure of his complicity in awarding bonuses for campaign work, using a state-paid contractor for politicking, using state resources for petition challenges and overseeing other state-paid political work, DeWeese never was indicted on any of it.
But public disclosure of the unindicted DeWeese's criminal activities created a huge public-relations problem for Gubernatorial Candidate Corbett. Unable to act upon the incriminating evidence within his very grasp, Corbett was forced to conduct a separate investigation to ferret out crimes not covered by his previous deal with DeWeese.
Now, it's certainly not difficult to be smarter than Bill DeWeese. And Senate GOP leaders may not feel as bulletproof as DeWeese did in the fall of 2007. Perhaps they learned a lesson from DeWeese's stumbles. On the other hand, this investigation is being conducted by the District Attorney of Allegheny County, not the GOP candidate for Governor. Senate GOP leaders presumably weren't able to cover their asses with this prosecutor by funneling campaign contributions through his running mate's commitee.