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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

The scolds aren't all right

The thundering voices who love to lash out at politicians are offering an interesting take on Tim Cahill. Everyone does it.

The Herald's Joe Battenfeld was the first to offer sympathy for the indicted former treasurer:
So, will President Obama be next? How about Mitt Romney, Deval Patrick or the entire Massachusetts congressional delegation? All of them have engaged in the practice of what Attorney General Martha Coakley is calling criminal behavior — using their public office to give themselves a political “edge."
Today's it's the Globe's Brian McGrory:
As I watched Martha Coakley announce criminal indictments against Tim Cahill this week, one simple thought kept banging around my head: This doesn’t feel right.
The tough guys going soft on Treasurer Tim?

There is something to be said for what appears to selective enforcement. Cahill and his predecessors have labeled the Treasury's Unclaimed Money List as their own public service as opposed to the law since the days of Bob Crane. Bill Galvin emerges from the darkness to talk about the Secretary of State's mandate to oversees securities trading and voting.

Why hasn't Coakley hauled their butts into court? Or gone after Obama, Romney or Patrick?

A little matter known as state ethics law.

In the past, violations like the ones Cahill stands accused were treated as civil infractions, met with slap-on-the-wrist fines and a wag of the Ethics Commission's finger. But that changed in 2009, when the conflict-of-interest provisions became criminal.

I do recall reading a thing or two about ethics and former House Speaker Sal DiMasi in the pages of the papers where sympathy flows for Cahill.

So shed no tears for Treasurer Tim. His case will serve as a test for the law just about everybody thought was necessary in the wake of the DiMasi debacle.

And don't bother with the cuffs for Mitt, Barack or Deval. But do keep an eagle eye out for future Galvin commercials.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

The backlash is against Coakley. If the indictment had been a federal one, like DiMasi, the Herald wouldn't have been so sympathetic.

April 04, 2012 7:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just figure it's Martha cementing her front runner status to be the next governor. She'll indict all the other leading Dems, and they'll be noone to run against her.

April 04, 2012 9:07 AM  

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