Rick Perry knows the GOP has some ethics problems. For example, their current candidate for Attorney General is being investigated for a violation of a state securities law. So, Rick would love to put a safe Republican in that office.
Soooooo, Perry threatens to veto funds for the public corruption office if Rosemary doesn’t resign. She calls his bluff. Rumor has it that he even offered her another state job if she would just step down and let him appoint her replacement.
That’s called abuse of official capacity and coercion of a public servant. Both are felonies.
Early in his second term the governor became involved in a serious quarrel with the University of Texas. The controversy grew out of the refusal of the board of regents to remove certain faculty members whom the governor found objectionable. When Ferguson found that he could not have his way, he vetoed practically the entire appropriation for the university. The excitement that greeted the veto was soon overshadowed by the greater excitement that surrounded the impeachment trial. While the campaign of 1916 was in progress, the Ferguson administration had been charged with a number of irregularities. Preliminary investigations failed to uncover any charge that would merit impeachment, and for a time the incident seemed closed. The Ferguson controversy with the university brought renewed interest in the old charges, however, and at about the same time a number of new charges were made. On July 21, 1917, in the midst of the excitement, Ferguson appeared before the Travis County grand jury, and several days later it was announced that he had been indicted on nine charges. Seven of the charges related to misapplication of public funds, one to embezzlement, and one to the diversion of a special fund.
That's a serious misrepresentation of what occurred in Sarah Palin's term of office.
Finding Number One
For the reasons explained in Section IV of this report, I find that Governor Sarah Palin abused her power by violating Alaska Statute 39.52.110(a) of the Alaska Executive Branch Ethics Act.
The truth was revealed there in that report that showed there was no unlawful or unethical activity on my part.
Governor Perry --- by threatening to take action as a public servant through veto power (coercion) --- attempted to influence another public servant (DA Lehmberg) in a specific performance of her official duty, "to-wit: the duty to continue to carry out her responsibilities as the elected District Attorney for the County of Travis through the completion of her elected term of office".
But that statute also specifically exempts “an official action taken by the member of the governing body.” The prosecutors claim that, while vetoing the bill may be an official action, threatening a veto is not. Of course the threat of the veto is an integral part of its function. The legislature can hardly negotiate with the governor if he won’t tell them in advance what he plans to veto. This is why, when you say the word “veto,” the next word that springs to mind is “threat.” That’s how vetoes work.
The theory behind the indictment is flexible enough that almost any kind of political conflict could be defined as a “misuse” of power or “coercion” of one’s opponents. To describe the indictment as “frivolous” gives it far more credence than it deserves. Perry may not be much smarter than a ham sandwich, but he is exactly as guilty as one.
[I]f his goal was to cover his right flank rather than to gut the PIU... it’s not hard to believe that months later, Perry (or his people) would let Democrats know that he was open to replacing Lehmberg with a Democrat, that he would help find another job for Lehmberg, and even that he would restore funding to the PIU if they proceeded with such a deal.
Bill Baker, the Kaufman County GOP chairman, called for Harrison, a fellow Republican, to resign....
He said the governor’s office and the state GOP had no involvement.
“We just felt like it was a local issue,” Baker said.
At the same time, he does not see any comparison with the Lehmberg case.
“She was over the state’s integrity unit,” Baker said. “She was not a good representative of that office.”
He said that he and many other Republicans for many years have supported the integrity unit being moved from the Travis County DA’s office and given to the Texas attorney general’s office, which has been in Republican hands for 15 years.
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