Saturday, December 03, 2005

Logan County Corruption Probe Makes Front Page of Washington Post

Friday's WaPo featured a front page story about the Logan County political corruption probe and the FBI's use of former Logan mayor Tom Esposito as an operative in an elaborate undercover investigation of the endemic vote-buying in the southern coalfields.

Some media accounts of this story excessively hype Esposito's "sham candidacy," but in reality, it was no different than using undercover cops or government informants wearing a wire to buy drugs from a drug dealer or any number of other common sting operations. No one was entrapped. Esposito was a longtime local politician who was commonly known to be on the sleazy side of things.

Hat tip to Don Surber for bringing this story to my attention.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

President Outlines Plan for Victory in Iraq

Today, President Bush outlined publicly a comprehensive plan for victory in our war with terrorists in Iraq during an address to the Naval Academy in Annapolis. This follows yesterday's Wall Street Journal column by Senator Joe Lieberman detailing the great, unreported success we are having in Iraq and the need for us to follow the course and not abandon our mission. The White House has posted on its Web site the National Strategy for Victory in Iraq and I encourage you to at least read its summary if not the full document.

While this President has generally done his job well, communication is one area where he has left much to be desired. More than just achieving results, it's crucial for a politician to communicate his success to the people and constantly remind us of it. The economy is humming along at 4.2% GDP growth. Democracy is taking hold in Iraq and the terrorists are now in their final stages of desperation to derail freedom and representative government in the Arab world. Yet, most people's perceptions have not been aligned with reality due to the White House's poor communication.

Mr. President, let us know daily how well things are doing, for your opponents will continue to falsely portray us as being mired in a quagmire abroad and the Second Great Depression at home.

Monday, November 28, 2005

Illegal Transfers from Wise Campaign to State Democratic Party Creates an Opportunity

Gary Abernathy reported last week that last year, then Governor Bob Wise illegally transferred $20,000 from his state campaign fund to the state Democratic Party's federal fund in violation of both state and federal law. Under the McCain-Feingold campaign finance reform that has proven so effective in getting the big money out of politics, this act should result in a federal prison sentence of up to 5 years for those who broke the law by transferring money from a non-federal account to a federal account in this quantity.

This case gives us the perfect opportunity to prove the Ruling Party's newfound commitment to law and order in election and ethics laws. Given their outrage over the allegations lodged against Kanawha County Prosecuting Attorney Bill Charnock, I am sure state Democratic Chairman Nick Casey will do a whirlwind tour of the state tomorrow calling for the appointment of special prosecutors at both the state and federal levels and for those who have committed crimes in this case to be burned at the stake. Don't hold your breath waiting for this to happen, for it will merely cause you to assume room temperature and qualify to vote in Lincoln, Logan, and Mingo counties.