P/sunny
76°
P/sunny
Hi 75° | Lo 56°
Katy Burns

Katy Burns: Governors behaving badly

  • Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell makes a statement as his wife, Maureen, listens during a news conference in Richmond, Va., Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2014.  McDonnell and his wife were indicted Tuesday on corruption charges after a monthslong federal investigation into gifts the Republican received from a political donor.  (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

    Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell makes a statement as his wife, Maureen, listens during a news conference in Richmond, Va., Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2014. McDonnell and his wife were indicted Tuesday on corruption charges after a monthslong federal investigation into gifts the Republican received from a political donor. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

  • New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie waves as he stands near his wife Mary Pat Christie after he was sworn in for his second term Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2014, in Trenton, N.J. Mired in a scandal, Christie sought to turn back the clock Tuesday and focus on the mandate he said he got in November to "stay the course" and put aside differences, even as Democrats ramped up an investigation into whether his administration abused its power.  (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

    New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie waves as he stands near his wife Mary Pat Christie after he was sworn in for his second term Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2014, in Trenton, N.J. Mired in a scandal, Christie sought to turn back the clock Tuesday and focus on the mandate he said he got in November to "stay the course" and put aside differences, even as Democrats ramped up an investigation into whether his administration abused its power. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

  • Former New Jersey Gov. John Corzine, and wife Sharon Elghanayan attend the funeral service for U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg, in New York's Park Avenue Synagogue, Wednesday, June 5, 2013. Lautenberg, a liberal Democrat from New Jersey, died Monday after suffering complications from viral pneumonia. At 89, he was the oldest member of the Senate and the last of 115 World War II veterans to serve there. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, Pool)

    Former New Jersey Gov. John Corzine, and wife Sharon Elghanayan attend the funeral service for U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg, in New York's Park Avenue Synagogue, Wednesday, June 5, 2013. Lautenberg, a liberal Democrat from New Jersey, died Monday after suffering complications from viral pneumonia. At 89, he was the oldest member of the Senate and the last of 115 World War II veterans to serve there. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, Pool)

  • Former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer watches the first half of the New York Knicks game as they faced the New Orleans Pelicans in an NBA basketball game at Madison Square Garden in New York, Sunday, Dec. 1, 2013.  (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

    Former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer watches the first half of the New York Knicks game as they faced the New Orleans Pelicans in an NBA basketball game at Madison Square Garden in New York, Sunday, Dec. 1, 2013. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

  • In a Dec. 18, 2013 photo, U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford, R-S.C., laughs while discussing his first months back in Congress during an Associated Press interview in his district office in Mount Pleasant, S.C. Sanford, a former two-term governor, won a special election in May 2013 to win his old 1st District seat in the House. He held the seat for three terms in the 1990s. (AP Photo/Bruce Smith)

    In a Dec. 18, 2013 photo, U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford, R-S.C., laughs while discussing his first months back in Congress during an Associated Press interview in his district office in Mount Pleasant, S.C. Sanford, a former two-term governor, won a special election in May 2013 to win his old 1st District seat in the House. He held the seat for three terms in the 1990s. (AP Photo/Bruce Smith)

  • Retired Air Force General Chuck Yeager, left, is seen with Gov. Arch Moore Jr. of West Virginia, at a news conference in Washington, Feb. 10, 1986.  (AP Photo/Tom Reed)

    Retired Air Force General Chuck Yeager, left, is seen with Gov. Arch Moore Jr. of West Virginia, at a news conference in Washington, Feb. 10, 1986. (AP Photo/Tom Reed)

  • Jailed former Rhode Island Gov. Edward D. DiPrete, is shown in this Jan. 12, 1998 photo, does not have to answer a set of questions asked by the state attorney general about money DiPrete received while in office, a Superior Court judge has ruled. The Rhode Island state Retirement Board voted to strip him of his state pension after he was sentenced last year to one year in prison after pleading guilty to charges of racketeering, extortion and bribery during his years as govenor. (AP Photo/Matt York)

    Jailed former Rhode Island Gov. Edward D. DiPrete, is shown in this Jan. 12, 1998 photo, does not have to answer a set of questions asked by the state attorney general about money DiPrete received while in office, a Superior Court judge has ruled. The Rhode Island state Retirement Board voted to strip him of his state pension after he was sentenced last year to one year in prison after pleading guilty to charges of racketeering, extortion and bribery during his years as govenor. (AP Photo/Matt York)

  • File -In this Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2012 file photo, Former Louisiana governor Edwin Edwards and his wife Trina Scott Edwards attend a luncheon for a Council For a Better Louisiana in Baton Rouge, La. Edwards and his wife, Trina, get their own reality show starting in February on the A&E cable network. "The Governor's Wife" is a vehicle to showcase Trina, the 30-something wife of the octogenarian ex-con former governor of the Pelican State. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File)

    File -In this Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2012 file photo, Former Louisiana governor Edwin Edwards and his wife Trina Scott Edwards attend a luncheon for a Council For a Better Louisiana in Baton Rouge, La. Edwards and his wife, Trina, get their own reality show starting in February on the A&E cable network. "The Governor's Wife" is a vehicle to showcase Trina, the 30-something wife of the octogenarian ex-con former governor of the Pelican State. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File)

  • Former Connecticut Gov. John Rowland fills in as a talk show host on WTIC AM radio in Farmington, Conn., Friday, July 2, 2010. (AP Photo/Jessica Hill)

    Former Connecticut Gov. John Rowland fills in as a talk show host on WTIC AM radio in Farmington, Conn., Friday, July 2, 2010. (AP Photo/Jessica Hill)

  • Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich waves goodbye to supporters after his scheduled address to reporters and his eventual departure for a medium-security facility in Littleton, Colo., for his 14-year sentence on corruption charges, that include his attempt to sell President Barack Obama's former Senate seat. Wednesday, March 14, 2012, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

    Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich waves goodbye to supporters after his scheduled address to reporters and his eventual departure for a medium-security facility in Littleton, Colo., for his 14-year sentence on corruption charges, that include his attempt to sell President Barack Obama's former Senate seat. Wednesday, March 14, 2012, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

  • Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell makes a statement as his wife, Maureen, listens during a news conference in Richmond, Va., Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2014.  McDonnell and his wife were indicted Tuesday on corruption charges after a monthslong federal investigation into gifts the Republican received from a political donor.  (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
  • New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie waves as he stands near his wife Mary Pat Christie after he was sworn in for his second term Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2014, in Trenton, N.J. Mired in a scandal, Christie sought to turn back the clock Tuesday and focus on the mandate he said he got in November to "stay the course" and put aside differences, even as Democrats ramped up an investigation into whether his administration abused its power.  (AP Photo/Mel Evans)
  • Former New Jersey Gov. John Corzine, and wife Sharon Elghanayan attend the funeral service for U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg, in New York's Park Avenue Synagogue, Wednesday, June 5, 2013. Lautenberg, a liberal Democrat from New Jersey, died Monday after suffering complications from viral pneumonia. At 89, he was the oldest member of the Senate and the last of 115 World War II veterans to serve there. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, Pool)
  • Former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer watches the first half of the New York Knicks game as they faced the New Orleans Pelicans in an NBA basketball game at Madison Square Garden in New York, Sunday, Dec. 1, 2013.  (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)
  • In a Dec. 18, 2013 photo, U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford, R-S.C., laughs while discussing his first months back in Congress during an Associated Press interview in his district office in Mount Pleasant, S.C. Sanford, a former two-term governor, won a special election in May 2013 to win his old 1st District seat in the House. He held the seat for three terms in the 1990s. (AP Photo/Bruce Smith)
  • Retired Air Force General Chuck Yeager, left, is seen with Gov. Arch Moore Jr. of West Virginia, at a news conference in Washington, Feb. 10, 1986.  (AP Photo/Tom Reed)
  • Jailed former Rhode Island Gov. Edward D. DiPrete, is shown in this Jan. 12, 1998 photo, does not have to answer a set of questions asked by the state attorney general about money DiPrete received while in office, a Superior Court judge has ruled. The Rhode Island state Retirement Board voted to strip him of his state pension after he was sentenced last year to one year in prison after pleading guilty to charges of racketeering, extortion and bribery during his years as govenor. (AP Photo/Matt York)
  • File -In this Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2012 file photo, Former Louisiana governor Edwin Edwards and his wife Trina Scott Edwards attend a luncheon for a Council For a Better Louisiana in Baton Rouge, La. Edwards and his wife, Trina, get their own reality show starting in February on the A&E cable network. "The Governor's Wife" is a vehicle to showcase Trina, the 30-something wife of the octogenarian ex-con former governor of the Pelican State. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File)
  • Former Connecticut Gov. John Rowland fills in as a talk show host on WTIC AM radio in Farmington, Conn., Friday, July 2, 2010. (AP Photo/Jessica Hill)
  • Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich waves goodbye to supporters after his scheduled address to reporters and his eventual departure for a medium-security facility in Littleton, Colo., for his 14-year sentence on corruption charges, that include his attempt to sell President Barack Obama's former Senate seat. Wednesday, March 14, 2012, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

When I first started reading about Bob McDonnell and his wife, Maureen, I had one thought: We’ve really gotta get new friends!

This was last year. Bob was the governor of Virginia, and word started trickling out of Richmond that the McDonnells had a great and generous new friend. This pal, a guy who happened to run a food supplement company, had taken a shine to the first couple, and he was as happy showering them with gifts as they were accepting them.

And it was the gifts that caught my eye.

A silver Rolex watch – inscribed “71st Governor of Virginia” – for him. Oscar de la Renta gowns for her. Black-and-white Louis Vuitton shoes, a blue Giorgio Armani jacket, golf clubs, iPhones.

Oh, yeah. Their friend essentially picked up the tab for at least one daughter’s wedding, gave them a $50,000 loan and happily flew them around on his private jet. Plus the governor was able to tool around in the pal’s Ferrari.

But, hey, no problem, said McDonnell when the largesse of the food supplement guy became known, we are friends. This is what friends do for one another, right?

And I found myself muttering balefully about the miserliness of our friends. If we’re lucky, what gifts do we get from them? A book, maybe? Or a bottle of cheap wine? Was it time to upgrade?

Then, alas for Bob and Maureen McDonnell, the federal prosecutors, who’d apparently been captivated by the story, decided that it was a crock. That the happy couple had been acting as shills for the food supplement guy, greasing his way into government offices. And last week, the feds indicted Bob (now out of office) and Maureen on 14 counts of conspiracy and fraud in exchange for at least $165,000 in luxury swag and loans.

And my thoughts turned to: Books and wine are great gifts!

And: So happy for our good old New Hampshire governors! They may be boring, even eccentric. (Think about Craig Benson and his crazy three-legged desk.) But they’re resolutely honest.

Never once did Benson – or any other governor at least in recent memory – try to sell a U.S. Senate seat, as did Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, now a guest in a federal slammer.

He is just one of four former Illinois governors (out of the last seven!) who have seen the inside of a prison, although one of them shouldn’t really count because he did his dirty deeds after he left office.

But corrupt governors aren’t unique to Illinois. Just consider, in recent years:

Connecticut’s John Rowland spent six months in the pokey for taking bribes and using state-paid contractors and materials to gussy up his weekend house.

Former Louisiana governor Edwin Edwards was generally described as “colorful.” Until he was described as a “convicted felon,” guilty of racketeering, extortion, money laundering, mail fraud and wire fraud. Demonstrating interesting family values, his son Stephen joined him behind bars.

Edward DiPrete of Rhode Island was indicted in 2000 and convicted – along with his son (more family values!) – for taking bribes and did a year behind bars.

In 1990, West Virginia Gov. Arch Moore Jr. was about to be tried for extortion, mail fraud, tax fraud and obstruction of justice when he copped a plea and got off with fewer than six years in prison.

There were chief executives – from North Carolina, South Dakota, Arizona, Alabama, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri and Ohio – who were convicted of various and sundry misdeeds but managed to avoid doing time.

We in New Hampshire have been saved the ignominy of seeing any governor off to the Big House – or even threatened with it. Which isn’t to say that back in the very bad old days ethical standards may have been just a wee bit lax. But still. Let’s hear it for the Granite State!

Then there are scores more governors across the land who regularly may stay within the limits of the law but who sure behave badly. New York’s Eliot Spitzer, that crusading former prosecutor and patron of prostitutes, anyone? Or Spitzer’s successor, David Paterson, who was accused of witness tampering and soliciting World Series tickets from the Yankees.

South Carolina’s Mark Sanford, of course, made sure he will forever be a footnote in political trivia quizzes when he memorably claimed to be “hiking the Appalachian Trail” when in truth he was dallying with his Argentinian mistress.

And California’s larger-than-life blowhard Arnold Schwarzenegger put an end to his political career as well as his marriage when he admitted to fathering a child with his family’s maid.

New Jersey has had a few charmers. First there was Jim McGreevey, whose heterosexual marriage exploded when it came out he’d appointed his completely unqualified boyfriend as state homeland security adviser.

He then pronounced himself “a gay American,” but neither the gay nor the straight community seemed much in a mood to celebrate him.

One of McGreevey’s successors was Jon Corzine, a multimillionaire ex-U.S. senator who distinguished himself by reportedly paying $6 million to an ex-girlfriend and labor official who later negotiated with the state of New Jersey.

And now, of course, the Garden State has Chris Christie, whose rudeness has been celebrated as a virtue. YouTube has regularly featured clips of Christie – supplied by his own staff – where he delights in telling constituents where to get off. It helped propel the portly governor into the front ranks of 2016 GOP presidential candidates.

Now, to Christie’s great discomfort, folks – including not just prying reporters but subpoena-wielding investigators and prosecutors – are wondering just what motivated some of the governor’s closest aides to engineer four days of massive traffic jams for people trying to cross the George Washington Bridge, dubbed the busiest such span in the world.

And now there’s the question of just what Christie’s lieutenant governor might have threatened the mayor of Hoboken with. And the question of when rudeness becomes something much worse.

On reflection, I think it’s safe to say that sometimes in statehouses a little boring is a very good thing.

(Monitor columnist Katy Burns lives in Bow.)

Ok so I think it is safe to say there is corruption on both sides. Would someone qualified, honest and down to earth please run? A good, strong, old fashioned Christian who doesn't mind a hard days work sounds about right to me.

Speaking of democrat liberal republic of Illinois........ "Illinois to Spend More on Pensions Than on Education". YUP .....democrats pensions for their state democrat liberal unions takes more money than the schools...that what democrat Governors do. Meanwhile...... "the fastest-growing states all have Republican governors" and "Republican governor turns Michigan around, builds $500 million surplus" ... Wisconsin Gov. Walker proposes an almost $ 1 BILLION tax cut for 2014. that is what Responsible Republicans do. post 2 of 12 on 1/26

When you say fastest-growing states, fastest-growing in what? You really need to be more specific. Are you talking population , GDP, employment, or what?

liberals - always asking others to do their homework - google it yourself if you are actually curious.

LOL You just might want to "google" it yourself. There are many choices there. So which Ref did you use? Or are you making up your own numbers again. And by the way You are totally way off base calling me a liberal! Just because some of us don't drink the Conservative coolaid and only see with blinders on doesn't mean we are liberal. So do yourself a favor and cut the so called insults. You just might be seen as more credible and not as pure raving lunatic

do you own homework - LIBERAL !

So I guess this means your making up your own numbers again and trying to state them as "facts". I do have to give you credit for the laugh.

Not sure why Mark Sanford made this list. Compared to Bill Clinton, he was a saint. Moreover, it was one woman, a woman he called a "soul mate". Clinton had a shameful affair with a naive intern and several other affairs for decades. He is so protected by progressives that they say that his sex life was his business. Never do progressives ever mention how weak Hillary was to stay with him, yet they pine over her as a future leader of the free world. Stunning hypocrisy.

Miz Hillary. remember how she was not going to stand by her man and stay at home and bake cookies, She is like many feminists. All hat and no cattle. All about women having choices, and be equal. yet she put up with her husband cheating on her for years, and had no shame when her daughter had to put up with that in her first year of college. Dragged her through the mud, because she could not leave her husband. That was a great message to pass on to your daughter.

Yet, somehow Mark Sanford was so much worse. Or Chriis Christie is so much worse. John Corzine should be spending time behind bars but in the case of that 1%'er the Democrats have no issue. Like Terry Macauliffe who made ill begotten gains in the dot.com bubble and no one mentions it on the Left.

With the Clintons, it is all about power and politics. She stayed with Bill for her own benefit, expecting to occupy the White House again some day. Not that she is at all qualified to do so. But she may be a strong woman practicing what progressives would criticize in a man.....opportunism. We need less of those egos in Washington and a few more down to earth folks. As far as Chelsea, hopefully she did not marry a man like her father and hopefully she will not be destined to repeat the same mistakes. What I have found is that traits like that run in families.

Holy Cow! Good for you and if they have a child you can perform an exorcism.

Nce post Itsa, Again we seem to agree on a subject. this is getting really scary, (but in a good way!)

. You are definitely a Republican. Her husband cheated so it is her fault? I thought Republicans didn't believe in divorce and single mothers. Why do Republicans feel that women's personal lives are their business, whether it is health care, contraception, abortion or whether they should leave their husbands or not. Read the last two sentences you wrote. Do you have any idea what you wrote there. HE cheated not her. No wonder Republicans have no clue when it comes to women..

So you believe that women's personal lives are their business? What about a man's person life? Why is my health care not my business Why is my healthcare choice of doctor and provider and keeping the insurance I have? If I ran for governor, you would certainly delve into my past, correct? Bill DID cheat on her but she stayed with him, which a real feminist would not do, it speaks to a weak character on her part.

Do you have any idea what you wrote Tillie? You bypassed everything I said. I said she was giving her daughter the message to stay married to a guy that is cheating on you. he was accused of many scandals involving women over the years. A confident, independent, intelligent woman would never pass that message on to her daughter. That message says you should put up with that kind of treatment from your husband. Hillary was the one that boasted she was not going to stand by her man and stay home and bake cookies. She not only stood by him, she lied for him.

I did not bypass what you said. I said it was none of your business. No one has ever said that Bill Clinton was not a good father and obviously his daughter loves him very much. Maybe Chelsea did not want her parents marriage to break up. Why is this your problem? Don't vote for Hillary but don't try to tell people how to run their own lives. It is amazing how hypocritical you Republicans are when it comes to telling women how to behave. They kept their marriage together. She didn't cheat, he did. Put your righteous anger where it belongs.

Good fathers do not bed every woman around. Paula, Catherine, Ginnifer, Monica. It defines his sense of morality and his overall character. Poor comes to mind. You are so concerned about Republicans telling women how to run their lives but not about progressives telling all of us how to run their lives.

Yeah you did. Saying it is none of my business is your way of avoiding discussing the issue. If your going to put yourself out there as a modern woman, with intelligence and independence, you do not fold like a deck of cards when it comes to dealing with a cheating husband. But we all know that if it was Bush who had cheated on his wife for years, got accused of groping women, etc, you would be shouting from the rooftops for him to be impeached. That is how it is these days. Progressives are hypocrites. I am not angry, you are. It is obvious anytime anybody discusses anything you go after them, and ignore what they discuss. That is right out of the Dem Handbook.

Relax Rabbit, she is running yet.

She is not running yet, you have plenty of time to hone your attacks. I am not angry, nothing on this site makes me angry. I give my opinion, you give yours. I just think it is interesting to see how right wingers think. Nothing anyone says on here makes any difference in the grand scheme of life. Most of the things I say on here is tongue in cheek and just like to get your side's goat. It is very easy.

And it would appear MSNBC is taking plenty of time honing their attack against Christie, seeing as how they've been covering Bridge-gate 24/7 for about three weeks now. I used to watch several MSNBC shows regularly but this constant harping on one story has made me avoid channel 40 on my comcast list like the plague.

Can't imagine any other channel doing that.

She IS running. Yet ? ? ?

Sanford's sex life was his business until he couldn't be found. He left the country without telling anyone in his state. He was the governor after all.

Sanford was "man" enough to stand up and admit what he did. I think I remember Clinton on television saying: "I did not have sex with that (post teen) woman" or testifying and telling lies to a grand jury "it depends what the definiition of "is" is. Monica Lewinsky's life is ruined and Democrats worship the Clintons as if they are pagan gods. That alone speaks volumes about the values and character of Democrats.

Should be the values and character of the Clintons. Otherwise another good post.

Post a Comment

You must be registered to comment on stories. Click here to register.