The wages of sin
Actually DiMasi is the second former member of the Massachusetts Legislature to need public support in paying for the cost of his defense on charges of public corruption. Former Sen. Dianne Wilkerson, now residing in federal housing in Danbury, Conn., also received taxpayer assistance.
No one disputes the right to adequate counsel, even if the proper citation is Miranda v. Arizona and not Joe Friday:
Representative Daniel B. Winslow of Norfolk, the ranking Republican on the Joint Committee on the Judiciary, said that if DiMasi cannot afford a lawyer, he is entitled to one, as is anyone else in similar circumstances.
“We have a constitutionally guaranteed right to counsel,’’ Winslow said. “It’s like Dragnet: ‘If you can’t afford one, one will be appointed for you.’ ’’
And when you think that this is all about an allegation of a $65,000 payoff you have to wonder even more why politicians put themselves into such situations. Especially when his alleged co-conspirators took in more.
DiMasi's slightly longer-term prospects are somewhat better. If exonerated, he will again be eligible for his state pension, and will likely have to repay at least some of the public support for his defense.
If convicted, he will also be the guest of the federal government for some period of time.
File this one under maybe crime really doesn't pay very well at all.