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September 04, 2007

Is Senator Craig Taking My Advice?

Finally, after jumping out of the window, the client gets some legal advice on his way down!

From the AP:

 

BOISE, Idaho - Sen. Larry Craig is reconsidering his decision to resign after his arrest in a Minnesota airport sex sting and may still fight for his Senate seat, his spokesman said Tuesday evening.

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"It's not such a foregone conclusion anymore, that the only thing he could do was resign," Sidney Smith, Craig's spokesman in Idaho's capital, told The Associated Press.

"We're still preparing as if Senator Craig will resign Sept. 30, but the outcome of the legal case in Minnesota and the ethics investigation will have an impact on whether we're able to stay in the fight — and stay in the Senate," Smith said.

Craig, a Republican who has represented Idaho in Congress for 27 years, announced Saturday that he intends to resign from the Senate on Sept. 30. But since then, he's hired a prominent lawyer to investigate the possibility of reversing his plea, his spokesman said.

 

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As I indicated in my first post, Senator Craig, if innocent, should immediately seek to set aside his guilty plea.  The effort may now be conisdered tardy and can be denied on that ground alone, but a reasonable judge, presented with a strong showing, could well grant the Senator a trial on the merits  IF that happens, I am confident that - as we used to say in the trade - "that case can be beat," provided the senator actually testifies in his own defense [and no skeletons come out of the closet...].

Stay tuned.

 

JBG

September 01, 2007

TRADING SCANDALS: CRAIG IS OUT & HSU IS IN

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TRADING SCANDALS: CRAIG IS OUT & HSU IS IN

 

Today, Idaho Senator Larry Craig (of the “Stall-Gate” scandal fame) announces his resignation from the US Senate (reportedly by September 30) yielding front stage to democratic fundraiser Norman Hsu (“Funnel-Gate”) who was jailed briefly yesterday on a felony arrest warrant out of Redwood California.

 

Mr. Hsu is a bagman for democrats, a specialist in bundling and funneling campaign donations.  These techniques arose as an end run around campaign finance laws: operatives like Mr. Hsu collect individual donations and bundle them for greater impact (perfectly lawful) but in other cases help create faux donors by using people of lesser means as donor fronts, using them as conduits to funnel money from well healed donors who have maxed out their individual contribution limits.

 

It seems that Mr. Hsu, who was living the high life in New York while evading – for fifteen years - an arrest warrant for felony grant theft out of Redwood City, CA.  Hsu’s guilt on the grand theft matter is not in dispute: he skipped out on his sentencing.

 

Among the democratic luminaries who benefited from Mr. Hsu’s donations during his decade and a half fugitive spree: Hilary Clinton ($23,000), Barak Obama ($7,000), the New York Democratic Party ($50,000) and San Francisco District Attorney Kamela Harris.  We can be sure that this is just the tip of an iceberg.

 

Here’s the hidden, larger scandal:

Bench Warrants – these are the arrest warrants that are issued by the court when a defendant skips out – are notorious for remaining unserved for years.  These arrest warrants are – for the most part – not proactively pursued by the authorities.  This is a case of institutional neglect, insufficient resource allocation, and nobody in charge. 

 

Contrary to the high expectations engendered by the CSI television dramas, most ordinary police departments and sheriff’s departments tend to perform on less than the “super-cop” level.

 

Want to reduce the crime rate across the board?  Create, fund and deploy a special task force with a nation-wide reach to hunt down the felons and violent misdemeanants who skip out on their court dates.  The recidivism rate of this subgroup of miscreants is very high.  Catch them sooner and spare the rest of us a lot of grief.

 

JBG

 

 

 
 

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