Among her first acts upon becoming Pennsylvania’s attorney general in 2013, Kathleen Kane scuttled a major bribery investigation. Now the Philly Inquirer and others are asking why.
Kane shut down an investigation that had amassed serious evidence — and a lot of it — that several public officials sold their votes on a specific issue.
The Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office ran an undercover sting operation over three years that captured leading Philadelphia Democrats, including four members of the city’s state House delegation, on tape accepting money, The Inquirer has learned.
Yet no one was charged with a crime.
Prosecutors began the sting in 2010 when Republican Tom Corbett was attorney general. After Democrat Kathleen G. Kane took office in 2013, she shut it down.
In a statement to The Inquirer on Friday, Kane called the investigation poorly conceived, badly managed, and tainted by racism, saying it had targeted African Americans.
“…tainted by racism…”
The investigation compiled evidence, in the form of hundreds of hours of recordings, that several Democrats were on the take for the sake of opposing voter ID. That is, rather obviously, corruption. Some of those caught taking bribes admit it.
But Kane is arguing that because the Democrats who were caught on tape selling their anti-voter ID votes happen to be black, that the investigation is “tainted by racism.” That is an argument that anti-corruption laws are only there to stop white people.
Before Kane ended the investigation, sources familiar with the inquiry said, prosecutors amassed 400 hours of audio and videotape that documented at least four city Democrats taking payments in cash or money orders, and in one case a $2,000 Tiffany bracelet.
Typically, the payments made at any one time were relatively modest – ranging from $500 to $2,000 – but most of those involved accepted multiple payments, people familiar with the investigation said. In some cases, the payments were offered in exchange for votes or contracts, they said.
Sources with knowledge of the sting said the investigation made financial pitches to both Republicans and Democrats, but only Democrats accepted the payments.
So Kane is incorrect when she claims that the targets were all black. Her claim is tainted by politics. She is refusing to answer for her actions, but did toss up a sexist smear in defense:
Kane declined to be interviewed about her handling of the case and instead issued a statement attributed to her office.
In the statement, Kane provided only one quote, dismissing those who questioned her decisions as “nothing more than the Good Ol’ Boys club playing political games to discredit me in order to fulfill their own selfish and improper agenda.”
Because women can’t be corrupt political hacks just like men…?
Kane did not say that she scuttled the investigation because all of those caught on tape selling their votes were Democrats. But the inference is obvious.
Christian Adams points out something else that’s relevant here: That Eric Holder has brought his Justice Department to bear against Republicans who stand accused of accepting illegal gifts. Specifically, Holder is going after former VA Gov. Bob McDonnell hammer and tongs.
Where is Holder when Democrats caught on tape accepting bribes need investigating?