Tuesday, September 11, 2012
AT LEAST TRY TO COME UP WITH MORE BELIEVABLE LIES
No matter how many times we have pointed out that it's a lie, the Tribune-Review's Brad Bumsted just can't break his addiction to the "Democrats were destroying evidence" fable.
In a little-noticed item in July, the Tribune-Review reported, "The state attorney general’s investigation of legislative corruption that began in 2007 found no substantial evidence of wrongdoing among Senate Republicans."
Bumsted does not waste the opportunity to trot out, yet again, Tom Corbett's thoroughly-debunked excuse for launching a highly-publicized investigation of one caucus - House Democrats - in early 2007 while giving the other three a year or two to get their ducks in obstructive formation.
Corbett "needed to focus on House Democrats first" Bumsted writes, because they "tried to destroy evidence."
But Corbett didn't receive a tip about evidence being destroyed until six months after he began his House-Democrats-only investigation.
In a breathless account of Corbett's "surgically executed raid" on the House Democratic Office of Legislative Research in August 2007, Post-Gazette reporters Tracie Mauriello and Dennis Roddy (now "special assistant" to Corbett) make it clear that investigators "rushed" to seize the evidence immediately after receiving the tip. The agents were in such a hurry they met with a judge at an airport at 7:30 a.m. "to press their case for an expedited decision."
By August of 2007, Corbett had been investigating House Democrats, and House Democrats alone, for six months.
The fact that it's a blatant lie is just one problem with the "destroying evidence" excuse. It contradicts Corbett's original claim that he was investigating all four caucuses in 2007. And it acknowledges his own incompetence.
As Corbett's opponent in the 2008 Attorney General race, John Morganelli, pointed out:
"If I have four potential targets, and I think they all might be involved in the same thing, and if I go to house A and take all the evidence out and wait two years to go after B, C and D, there’s not going to be any evidence in B, C and D. What you do is you have to swoop in all at one time."
That is, if you really do have four potential targets. Even some Senate Republicans believe Corbett was politically motivated to spare their caucus:
Republican Sen. John Eichelberger, a fiscal and social conservative from Blair County who requested the investigation, told the Tribune-Review on Wednesday that he believes the lack of action by the office is politically motivated.