Thursday, June 24, 2010

Joe Bruno Visits Plattsburgh; Not Even A Rumble Of Thunder

(C) 2010 Stan Spire

Justice for Joe Bruno

Former state Senate Majority Leader Joseph L. Bruno was in town the other day for a special dedication at a local Catholic church. Fortunately he wasn't struck by lightning.

The poor innocent man. What would his critics say if he had been struck by a bolt from above? Joe's friends would claim that once again he was a good man being persecuted only for the appearance of impropriety.

In case you don't follow the news, let me quote from an Albany Times Union newspaper article by Senior Writer Brendan J. Lyons, dated May 7, 2010:

"Bruno was charged with enriching himself through consulting deals with people who had an interest in his legislative decision-making. The government said he failed to disclose material conflicts of interest as required. Bruno also must pay $280,000 in restitution to the state of New York, the amount of money he gained in the two felony counts on which he was convicted."

If you go to the web site that defends poor Joe (click on the above icon) it sounds like the feds were leaning on a guy just doing his job.

Joe was sentenced to two years but he's still walking around, free of prison walls. There's a legal challenge to the law that was used to persecute -- I mean prosecute -- him, the honest services statute. There are three cases to be decided by the US Supreme Court that challenge the 20-year-old federal statute.

So until the cases work their way through the system Joe can breath air as a free man and grace Plattsburgh, NY with his presence.

According to the Times Union article, the federal judge got upset with Joe at the sentencing, admonishing him "for failing to apologize for, or even acknowledge, his crimes" even though a jury of peers found him guilty.

That poor man, Joe Bruno. Some people act like Albany politicians are a bunch of self-serving crooks.

No comments: