Friday, April 17, 2009

Ray Sansom Indicted

Gov. Charlie Crist blew off criticism of former House Speaker Ray Sansom's ethical lapses. Sansom was forced to stepped down as House Speaker because of several related scandals. House Republicans showed their support by giving Sansom a standing ovation. Conserrvative pundit Joe Scarborough called the GOP response a "moral crisis." A grand jury today indicted Sansom and Northwest Florida State College president Bob Richburg. Both have been charged with the third degree crime of official misconduct. They must surrender to authorities. That means there will soon be a booking picture of Sansom on the internet.

"We believe that Speaker-designate Ray Sansom because of his friendship and political contributions violated the trust that the citizens of Florida should expect from its elected representatives," the grand jury report said.

Sansom secured $6 million of taxpayer dollars for Jay Odom's hanger. Odom has a long history of financially contributing to Sansom's campaigns. Sansom, Odom, and Richburg publicly denied discussing the hanger project. The St. Petersburg Times reported the three discussed the hanger in several emails. Sansom got a $110,000-a-year job at Northwest Florida State College, the same day he became House Speaker. Richburg got the school funding at a time of budget cuts. Odom got a pimped out hanger deck to park his private planes.

On news of the indictment: Crist said, "That's distressing to hear." Really Governor? Where was your dismay when the Sansom allegations first surfaced?

When asked whether he'd be willing to investigate, Gov. Charlie Crist said, "Who asked me to do that?"

"Karen Thurman," replied Tampa Tribune reporter Catherine Dolinski.

"Yeah, next question," Crist said.

Why did Attorney General tell Panhandle resident he had no jurisdiction to investigate Sansom? When the St. Petersburg Times published McCollum's email the Attorney General suddenly realized he did have jurisdiction. It must have been a light bulb over the head moments.

It is hypocritical for Crist to now be distressed about Sansom. Republicans that gave a standing ovation to Sansom have no credibility to denounce Sansom's actions. I spent time on this blog bashing Gary Siplin and Rod Blagojevich. I don't need trolls and conservative bloggers giving me a fucking lecture about being fair and balanced. Ideology is one thing. Corruption is illegal. There is no grey area. What part of breaking the law do people not understand?

After the Bill Clinton impreachment, Democrats learned to stay away from radioactive pols. Republicans start a fucking defense fund (spare me Marty Peretz being a Dem) for Lewis "Scooter" Libby. The insanity of defending Libby's indefensible outing of Valerie Plame is symptomatic of what is wrong with the GOP.

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