Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Chris Christie, Ron Paul Inc and Federal Investigations

Jeff Smith is assistant professor of politics and advocacy at the New School’s urban-policy graduate program and served in the Missouri Senate from 2006 to 2009. He spent 2010 in federal prison on charges stemming from a 2004 campaign finance violation. He has written a  commentary for Politico in which he states that Chris Christie is toast because of the federal investigation swirling around him.

After reading the commentary, it is easy to agree with Smith that Christie is toast, but those familiar with the Federal investigations surrounding campaign finance violations at Ron Paul Inc, will quickly realize that what Smith writes about Christie also applies in many ways to Ron Paul Inc.

 Consider, Smith writes:
Federal prosecutorial tentacles would make an octopus envious. And so despite two marathon press conferences, a 360-page report produced after an internal investigation by Christie’s lawyer Randy Mastro and beheadings for much of his inner circle, Christie is actually in worse shape than he was in when the scandal first broke...
As I know all too well, having gone to prison for charges related to campaign finance violations, years can elapse between the time federal agencies first begin probing a target and the time they actually bring charges, and the deliberate, exhaustive nature of federal investigations is legend. (To take one example, when I reported for my post-conviction interview with agents, they knew the dates I had visited a casino and amounts of money I had withdrawn from an ATM a decade earlier, despite this being totally unrelated to the investigation.) Just ask Vincent Gray, the soon-to-be former mayor of Washington, D.C., who has been on the defensive after a multi-year federal investigation into his campaign finances. The recent lull in the Christie case (briefly interrupted Friday afternoon by the appearance of Christie press secretary Michael Drewniak before a grand jury) may be just an illusion—a glassy ocean surface with vicious activity occurring in the depths. No one who talks to the feds would breathe a word, for multiple reasons, from the obvious (prosecutorial orders/fear of an obstruction of justice charge) to the more subtle (the shame of snitching on a beloved boss and patron).
Christie’s continuing travel and exceptional fundraising as Republic Governors Association chair and likely presidential candidate is aimed in large part at combating the impression of a weakening governor with all avenues of political advancement quickly closing. But given the length, breadth and opacity of federal investigations, this is like a surfer in the eye of the hurricane exhorting his pals, “Rain’s stopped – surf’s up!”...
But while a federal target is traipsing around with billionaires in Orlando and Las Vegas, the gears of justice continue grinding away with a singular focus. When you’re a hammer, everything looks like a nail; and for federal prosecutors focused on public corruption, the bigger the public figure, the larger the scalp.
I don't believe Ron Paul in any way can be linked to the shenanigans of Ron Paul Inc. But I am not comfortable saying that with certainty about anyone in Ron Paul Inc, or others who employ, or did employ, Ron Paul Inc operatives. The federal octopus is probing at it is not going to be pretty, when the result of the probing is learned.

1 comment:

  1. Crony Congress – Rep. Mike Rogers Has Links to the Benghazi Scandal Yet is in Charge of the Investigation

    You can't find a bigger conflict of interest than that...

    Dick Morris writes:

    Congressman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.), as Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, is charged with investigating the adequacy of security at the Benghazi compound prior to the September 11, 2012 terrorist attack.

    His wife, Kristi Clemens Rogers was the president and the CEO of the company that was contracted by the State Department to provide that security!

    Mrs. Rogers, until recently, served as president and CEO of Aegis LLC, the contractor to the United States Department of State for intelligence-based and physical security services.

    Aegis, a British private military company with overseas offices in Afghanistan, Bahrain, Iraq, Kenya, Nepal and the U.S., won a $10 billion, 5-year contract with the State Department to provide security for U.S. diplomatic posts around the world.