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Pride goeth before a fall

On the very same day Tom DeLay was indicted for campaign-finance charges, so too was a Massachusetts State Senator sued by the state Attorney General over similar matters.

Senator Dianne Wilkerson has a spotty record with regard to money. She once served six months under house arrest for failing to file her state and federal income taxes. She's been sued over unpaid loans and bills. She's been fined for prior violations.

This time, though, the state looked at her campaign's books and are kinda curious about $80,000 her campaign's spent over the last two years. It looks like she's been spending contributions on such things as pizza, groceries, "consultant fees" to her sons, a $60.00 bra, and about $18,000 in unspecified "reimbursements" paid directly to her personal bank accounts.

WIlkerson is one of the more liberal members of the Massachusetts Senate (and that's saying a LOT), so it's no surprise that the Boston Herald is all over the story, with tons of juicy details. In fact, their last paragraph gives a neat little summary to her career:

She has been subjected to a series of highly publicized financial problems: failure to pay federal and state taxes and her student loans; stiffing vendors, including her own attorneys, out of tens of thousands in fees; and violating a federal judge's order of house arrest in 1998. She has been re-elected to the state Senate six times.

But you know she's in trouble when her bosom buddies at the Boston Glob are also tossing her to the wolves.

But Massachusetts' Attorney General, Tom Reilly, is looking to run for governor, and the Glob likes him. So if giving him a little favorable publicity for showing he's "non-partisan" when it comes to fighting corruption may help, tossing Wilkerson overboard is a pretty small price to pay.

Wilkerson has been in the Senate since 1992, was the first black woman elected to the State Senate, and hasn't faced a serious challenge for her seat in some time. But now it looks like her career might finally be drawing to a close.

But again, this is Massachusetts. I ain't betting the rent on it. She'll probably survive this scandal, too.

I know that in a democracy, "people tend to get the government they deserve," but even I have trouble believing that the people of Massachusetts have done anything so heinous as to deserve THIS, in addition to such other notables as Michael Dukakis, John Kerry, and (shudder) Ted Kennedy.


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Comments (7)

'WIlkerson is one of the mo... (Below threshold)
ICallMasICM:

'WIlkerson is one of the more liberal members of the Massachusetts Senate '

You're confusing liberal with criminal. I'm sure she'll also blame these problems on racist death threats.

My sons friends play for a soccer team sponsored by her. I suggested they have orange jumpsuits for uniforms.

Jay, I can appreciate your ... (Below threshold)

Jay, I can appreciate your wishing that her political career might come to a close over this -- in most places it would. But I predict that this sorry excuse for a person will get another wrist slap, no felony record (unless Mike Sullivan has the balls to indict her for tax evasion), and another several terms in the Big-- I mean, STATE House.

By the way, in your description of her, you failed to include "welfare recipient."

Let's see...you are compari... (Below threshold)
Drew Edmondson:

Let's see...you are comparing the indictment of one of the most powerful men in our nation...to the actions of a State Senator? Who led the after hours pressure that gave Billions to drug companies, creating MORE national debt and screwed our seniors...Delay or the State lady from Mass.? (before the rant about the agenda of a Texas Dem Earle..surely you know of the 14 Texas politicians he went after 11 were Dems and it was the grand jury made up of people like you and me that made the indictment)...sorry, I forgot it had to pass the Senate where DR. Frist made millions by sale of a family stock(and please don't talk about a "blind trust")...how much demonstrated corruption will it take for you to realize that Bush has destroyed our Consevitive Republican Party as created by Barry Goldwater? That is why I am an Independant who is all for a hosing down of the Bush pig trough and there rises a Republican party I will feel proud to rejoin.

And becuase she is a libera... (Below threshold)
spurwing plover:

And becuase she is a liberal demacrat the liberal left-wing news media will ignore it completly as they always do when it comes to liberal demacrats

No, Drew, I'm commenting on... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

No, Drew, I'm commenting on the coincidence of the timing. I have absolutely nothing to say about the DeLay case; I don't know very much about it, and have nothing new to add that others haven't already said.

Speaking purely for myself, I don't recall writing very much about members of Congress outside of New England -- and even there, I think I've focused on Massachusetts' two Senators.

As far as DeLay goes, I'm 90% leaning towards the prosecutor being a political hack and general swine, and 10% that he's really on to something -- but that's based on VERY little information, and I feel no great compunction to dig up any more. The DeLay case will resolve itself with or without my contribution, so I've decided to let it stand or fall on its own. I've got many other issues that I find far more interesting.

J.

Drew - does whatever DeLay ... (Below threshold)
ICallMasICM:

Drew - does whatever DeLay did or didn't do absolve a career criminal and racebaiter?

I AGREE WITH DREW, AND ALSO... (Below threshold)
oliver bush:

I AGREE WITH DREW, AND ALSO QUESTION THE TIMING OF THIS WILKERSON STORY. I BELIEVE THIS 'SCANDAL' WAS CRAFTED TO BE A DISTRACTION DESIGNED TO TAKE FOCUS OFF OF MOTHER SHEEHAN'S MESSAGE, AND THE INCREASING GRAVE REVELATIONS REGARDING THE BUSH-DELAY-CRIMINAL-CONSERVATIVE-CABAL.

BESIDES, WILKERSON CAN'T POSSIBLY BE GUILTY. AS THE POST STATES, SHE'S A STRONG-WILLED INDEPENDENT WOMAN OF COLOR. EVERYONE KNOWS THAT ALL CORRUPT OFFICIALS ARE WHITE HETERONORMATIVE REPUBLICAN MEN, CASE CLOSED.


--
OHB

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