If They Gave Oscars to Defendants on the Stand

“His expression was grim, his voice cracked at just the right times, and he appeared in genuine pain — all while describing his wife.

As Bob McDonnell testified in his public corruption trial Thursday, it was easy to see why he was once regarded as one of the most talented Republican politicians in the country. He didn’t simply throw his wife, Maureen, under a bus to keep himself out of prison. He laid her down gently on the road, with a pillow and blanket.”

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McDonnells Show Great Judgment — In Choosing Their Lawyers

“This wasn’t about a disintegrating marriage and an emotional, needy wife. This was a family of people who presented themselves as a shining example of all that is moral and righteous. And once Virginians trusted that they were good people and put McDonnell in office, the entire family allegedly sold off what the people of Virginia had given them — the public trust.

“All the lovesick melodrama that the first lady had a crush on [Jonnie] Williams and all the gifts and cash were about the attention has likely been manufactured by the defense lawyers. Maybe they have some evidence to back up this storyline. But when this scandal began, Bob and Maureen McDonnell showed up in court holding hands, presenting themselves as a solid, Christian couple.

“Now they are changing that narrative, walking in and out of court in separate entourages, riding different elevators, brushing past each other without even making eye contact. The staging in court borders on ridiculous. They are doing nothing more than selling Virginians another tale.”

Petula Dvorak, “Here’s Jonnie:  Cue the rapt gaze from former Va. first lady Maureen McDonnell,” WaPo

The defense is total BS, but very clever.  Whatever the McDonnells are paying their lawyers, they deserve more!

Is McDonnell Corruption Case Now a Sex Scandal Too?

Former VA Gov. Bob McDonnell and his wife Maureen are on trial for corruption in connection with over $165,000 in gifts and loans they got from Jonnie Williams, the head of snake oil company Star Scientific.  The guy was selling “health supplements” made from tobacco!

Now Maureen’s lawyer is claiming that Maureen had romantic feelings for Williams and that her marriage had “broken down” to the point that she and the Governor were “barely on speaking terms.”

Sounds as if Governor Ultrasound wasn’t sharing his wand with his wife anymore, and she was looking elsewhere.

Fishman Seeks Big Fish (Whale?) Chris Christie

Esquire reports* that some of Chris Christie’s people will be indicted as soon as next month for Bridgegate — his Port Authority appointees, David Samson, Bill Baroni, and David Wildstein as well as his former chief counsel, Charlie McKenna.

Key quotes:

“Don’t underestimate what Wildstein has on Christie.  And Wildstein and Baroni have both turned on Samson.  If Samson doesn’t give Fishman Christie, Samson is toast.

“They’ve got him cold.  He got sloppy, arrogant, and greedy.  Samson will want a deal.  This way, he’d get one or two years.  He’d have a future on the other side.  He won’t want to die in jail. [Samson is 74.]

“But Fishman is really focused on Christie.  Ultimately, he believes he’ll get to the governor.”

* “Exclusive:  Prosecutor Is Closing In on Gov. Christie,” Scott Raab and Lisa Brennan

Jebbie is smiling.

Don’t Let the Door Hit You in the Tush

New Jersey’s king of conflicts of interest, David Samson, has resigned his job as Chris Christie’s corrupt Chairman of the Port Authority.

Bridgegate has brought to light numerous instances where clients of Samson’s law firm got huge contracts from the Port Authority, and Mr. Samson in turn got huge legal fees.  As rocks started getting turned over, sleazy Sampson tried to recuse himself from a vote favoring one of his clients two years after the fact.

I’m glad he’s finally gone, but he needs not just to leave the Port Authority, he needs to go to jail.