Friday, February 02, 2018

Trump Era: Breakdown Of Law And Order-- Pennsylvania Edition


The Pennsylvania Supreme Court looked at the unconstitutional gerrymander the Republicans in the state legislature perpetrated on the citizens of the state and threw it out. The Justices instructed the Republicans not to show up for prison but to redraw the maps in time for the November midterms. Prison terms would have been more appropriate... but the Court was lenient. One of the leaders of the crooked gang, Senate president Joe Scarnati, announced Wednesday that he doesn't plan to cooperate with what the Supreme Court ordered. This is how desperate Pennsylvania Republicans are to hold onto their illegitimate and illegal power:
"In light of the unconstitutionality of the Court’s Orders and the Court’s plain intent to usurp the General Assembly’s constitutionally delegated role of drafting Pennsylvania’s congressional districting plan, Sen. Scarnati will not be turning over any data identified in the Court’s Orders," his lawyers wrote in a letter to the court.

...In declaring the state’s congressional map an unconstitutional partisan gerrymander, the state high court ordered a new map redrawn in time for the primary election in May. It gave the General Assembly less than three weeks to approve a new map, then have it signed by Gov. Wolf. If that does not happen, the justices said in their order, they would adopt their own boundaries.

Days later, the court issued another order, announcing it had retained Stanford University professor Nathaniel Persily as an adviser and requesting the current municipal boundaries from the General Assembly. It also requested the parties submit maps and technical data used in expert testimony. Lawyers for the plaintiffs-- 18 Democratic voters from across the state--— submitted their maps and data Wednesday, as did a lawyer for Lt. Gov. Mike Stack. Other parties, including Wolf, said they did not have any data to provide.

Scarnati and Turzai have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to block the state court ruling, arguing that the U.S. Constitution gives state legislatures the power to run elections. By saying it would intervene and draw its own map, the lawmakers wrote, the state high court takes that power from the legislature. The court has not officially agreed to consider the case, but U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. has requested a response from the plaintiffs by 4 p.m. Friday.

In the meantime, lawmakers have taken the initial steps toward drawing new lines.
Meanwhile, for those perplexed about the sudden retirement of powerful Philly Machine boss, Bob Brady-- he isn't running for reelection-- there is a back story for those outside of Philadelphia-- and it isn't the bullshit Pelosi spit out about Brady's outstanding service as "a forceful champion for working people in Pennsylvania and across the nation." True, he doesn't want to be beaten by Nina Ahmad but there's more to it than that.
The FBI last year filed charges against four people in an investigation into a payment Brady's campaign made to a primary opponent in 2012. Three people have pleaded guilty, including a political consultant to Brady.

Brady's campaign gave a city judge who challenged him in the 2012 primary $90,000 to quit the race, according to the plea memo unsealed after the judge's campaign aide pleaded guilty to breaking campaign finance laws. And Brady himself tried to "influence" a witness in the case, according to prosecutors, who said they filed the case under seal for fear he would "corrupt(ly)" pressure the aide not to cooperate.
At the end of last year, one of Brady's campaign workers agreed to take the fall for Brady. No one was buying it though.
A political consultant for U.S. Rep. Bob Brady pleaded guilty to lying about a $90,000 payoff made by the congressman’s campaign to get an opponent to quit a 2012 primary.

Donald Jones, 62, pleaded guilty on Friday to making false statements to the FBI in a campaign finance probe involving the boss of the Philadelphia Democratic Party.

“I accept full responsibility for my actions and consider my guilty plea a first step in making amends,” Jones said in a statement issued by his attorney Alan J. Tauber. “I apologize to the people of Philadelphia and to my family for bringing this dishonor upon them.”
Goal ThermometerThe district is just 42% white but the establishment white Machine is not giving up without a fight; there's also a black establishment machine, which is likely to run Joanna McClinton. It looks to me that the white machine is going to put up Richie Lazar as the man they want to hold onto Brady's seat and keep Ahmad out of it. Earlier in the month The Inquirer was already speculating that "Many in Philadelphia’s political circles wonder whether Brady is scheming to install Lazer as his successor... One political operative said Lazer replacing Brady would be 'a status quo bait and switch.' Another said that if Lazer does run, it probably would be with Brady’s blessing." The fount of corruption in Philly politics, John “Johnny Doc” Dougherty, building trades leader, is behind Lazar, just as Brady always has.

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At 5:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And this is the Party too many want to reform from within. Good luck with that!

At 6:43 AM, Anonymous Jacqrat said...

Again with the whining and pearl-clutching...

What is your strategy, Anonymous?

Which of the endless "really viable" third parties we have right now are you going to help SWEEP into Congress in 2018?

At 7:36 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jacqrat: You please continue supporting the two parties in power right now. That has worked out so till now, it just has to work great going forward.

At 8:43 AM, Blogger cybermome said...

Well we had good news here in PA

The Chair of the State Democratic party resigned today

At 9:53 AM, Anonymous Jacqrat said...

You want some good news?


At 9:55 AM, Blogger Cat's Cradle said...

@Cybermome -- if the chair was as bad as the chair of the DCCC then GOOD RIDDANCE.

Time to take out the trash!

At 10:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

DemEnter is working, Jacqrat? SIX candidates? WOW! I can see that Blue Tsunami rising right NOW! Well clutch my pearls and milk my bull, I should have KNOWN! I should have had FAITH that Wall Street's cheapest whores would rise to power!

My thanks to you for opening my eyes!

At 5:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

At the federal level, none of the 'good news' matters. The DxCCs and the caucuses are still under the golden anvil of the money and the money's bought shills. 6 more or 50 more at the bottom won't have any effect, and they'll all be gone in another cycle after their voters see all that their party refused to do. Just like 2010.

But by all means... keep beating that dead donkey. Maybe if you got a bigger stick...


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