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Texas Gov. Rick Perry indicted for abuse of power


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#1 blank

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Posted 15 August 2014 - 23:53

Texas Governor and former presidential candidate Rick Perry has been indicted for allegedly abusing his power by vetoing state funding for the government watchdog group charged with investigating corruption and police scandals.
 
According to the Associated Press, a grand jury indicted the Republican governor on Friday for fulfilling a veto threat that consisted of withholding funds for the state’s anti-corruption group, the Public Integrity Unit.
 
This marks the first time in almost 100 years that a Texas governor has been indicted.
 
Perry was charged with felony counts of abuse of official capacity and coercion of public servant. The first charge carries a maximum punishment of five to 99 years in prison, while the second is punishable by up to 10 years behind bars.
 



According to local KVUE news anchor Tyler Sieswerda, the prosecutor in charge confirmed that Perry will be booked next week.



The charges come after Perry’s 2013 veto threat, which would have withheld $7.5 million in funding for the Public Integrity Office if its leader, District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg, refused to resign her post. Lehmberg was arrested for driving drunk but declined to step down, saying instead she would not seek reelection in 2016. Perry carried out his threat using a line-item veto on a state budget appropriations bill, sparking a showdown with a grand jury.
 
"Despite the otherwise good work of the Public Integrity Unit's employees," a Perry said after he issued the veto, "I cannot in good conscience support continued State funding for an office with statewide jurisdiction at a time when the person charged with ultimate responsibility of that unit has lost the public's confidence."

 
Although Perry is allowed to veto parts or all of any legislation passed by state lawmakers, his actions drew fire from the Texans for Public Justice (TPJ) watchdog group, whose ethics complaint stated the governor was effectively using his veto power to coerce Lehmberg into leaving her job.
 
"Threatening to take an official action against her office unless she voluntarily resigns is likely illegal," TPJ director Craig McDonald said following Perry’s veto. "The governor overstepped his authority by sticking his nose in Travis County's business."
 


In the wake of having its funding removed, the Public Integrity Unit remained open since Travis County agreed to support a smaller undertaking, but two employees were laid off. Another 18 either retired early or were reassigned.
 
“It’s awfully convenient that Governor Perry vetoed money for the state’s ethics enforcement office while his administration and his cronies have a history of making ethically questionable decisions,” Emmanuel Garcia, a spokesman for the Texas Democratic Party, said in April to Bloomberg.
 
After the grand jury was assembled in April, though, Perry spokeswoman Lucy Nashed defended the governor and said his actions were perfectly legal.
 
"The veto in question was made in accordance with the veto power afforded to every governor under the Texas Constitution,” she said, “and we remain ready and willing to assist with this inquiry.”
http://rt.com/usa/18...ed-power-abuse/




#2 +Quillz

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Posted 16 August 2014 - 00:00

I don't live in Texas and thus have little knowledge of the matter beyond this topic. But somehow, I don't see him spending a day in jail.



#3 DocM

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Posted 16 August 2014 - 04:48

First of all, a governor making a veto threat on pending legislation is a crime?!? Seriously? Think about that a minute. Every single governor, Obama and every other president for 200 years would be in jail.

Believe it or not this actually started with a Democrat prosecutor, District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg, being hauled on and jailed for drunk driving. There was a move to remove her from office which failed, and now there is an ethics complaint about her for campaign fund violations,

http://m.texaslawyer...icle/1698641937

Gov. Perry has pushed for her to resign, and then the Democrat political machine fought back,

http://time.com/3121...d-texas-battle/

TIME

Gov. Rick Perry was indicted on two counts of abuse of power Friday by a Texas grand jury, in the latest chapter of a long-running politically-charged dispute between the Republican and his Democratic opponents.

The indictment revolves around Perry’s veto of $7.5 million in funding to state’s public integrity unit., based in the Travis County district attorney’s office. District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg, who ran the unit, was arrested on charges of driving while intoxicated in 2012. Perry publicly demanded that she step aside. When she didn’t, he vetoed the unit’s funding.

At the same time, the unit, long a weather vane to Texas politics, was investigating one of Perry’s signature achievements, the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas, for alleged mismanagement. Texans for Public Justice, a left-leaning watchdog group, filed an ethics complaint over Perry’s public veto threat.

(^ NOTE: a revenge ploy)

At the request of Special Prosecutor Michael McCrum, a Travis County grand jury returned felony indictments against Perry on two counts, abuse of official capacity, which carries a penalty of five to 99 years in prison, and coercion of a public servant, which carries a penalty of two to 10 years.

Texas politics is a contact sport, and this kind of tactic has been used by Democrats against Republican legislators before. Democrats got a conviction of Republican Congressman Tom DeLay for political actions, which was overturned,

http://www.npr.org/b...urned-on-appeal

The idea is to raise a political stink, then it either goes away or results in a conviction that gets reversed. Either way it served its political purpose.

#4 +macoman

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Posted 16 August 2014 - 05:11

The problem with Perry is that he is charged with two felonies of abuse of power to damage the job of someone else in purpose. That is punishable with jail and he deserve it for been a coward and rat.

#5 DocM

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Posted 16 August 2014 - 05:31

Advocating for the resignation/removal of a drunk driving, ethically damaged DA who heads up a State Public Integrity unit should be illegal?

Think about that again before answering.

#6 +macoman

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Posted 16 August 2014 - 06:02

Advocating for the resignation/removal of a drunk driving, ethically damaged DA who heads up a State Public Integrity unit should be illegal?

Think about that again before answering.

Give me a source that is confirmed?

#7 DocM

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Posted 16 August 2014 - 06:35

Links in my first post. Read the thread before asking for sources.

#8 spenser.d

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Posted 16 August 2014 - 11:31

Advocating for the resignation/removal of a drunk driving, ethically damaged DA who heads up a State Public Integrity unit should be illegal?

Think about that again before answering.


He went a little further than advocating and that's the point. I'm sure if he was buddy buddy with that person he'd have let it slide anyhow.

Is almost too bad - his potential presidential run would've been entertaining.

#9 DocM

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Posted 16 August 2014 - 16:49

Doesn't matter to motivation, Texas has a separation of powers and the governor the constitutional veto power to kill legislation for whatever political reason, stated or not. The judiciary has no power over it.

As the states chief executive he has the right, and I would say the responsibility, to call for the resignation.of any lower officer who becomes ethically challenged, and this DA fits the bill.

This is yet another example of the Dems in Austin using the legal system for political purposes, which they've been doing for >20 years. No different than the corrupt Dems in Detroit acting in ways the other state Dems end up paying for.

#10 gameboy1977

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Posted 16 August 2014 - 17:06

Do you think that Texas Governor Rick Perry is a dictator since 2000 to 2014?  



#11 wakjak

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Posted 16 August 2014 - 17:08

Doesn't matter to motivation, Texas has a separation of powers and the governor the constitutional veto power to kill legislation for whatever political reason, stated or not. The judiciary has no power over it.

As the states chief executive he has the right, and I would say the responsibility, to call for the resignation.of any lower officer who becomes ethically challenged, and this DA fits the bill.

This is yet another example of the Dems in Austin using the legal system for political purposes, which they've been doing for >20 years. No different than the corrupt Dems in Detroit acting in ways the other state Dems end up paying for.

Oh boo hoo to you. As if Rick Perry didn't over step his powers for political reasons, your eyes have blinders on them and they'll never come off. The grand jury found him to have abused his powers.

You want to call dems corrupt. Look in the mirror. You say you were or are a Dem, but your actions speak louder than words. The Republicans are the group of corruption, they invented the game and you defend them at ever turn.

You can think their **** doesn't stink, but they're the smelliest of then all.

You haven't even read why he was indicted. It wasn't because he called for their resignation.

#12 Hum

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Posted 16 August 2014 - 17:14

Maybe Perry can pardon himself.



#13 DocM

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Posted 16 August 2014 - 17:46

Oh boo hoo to you. As if Rick Perry didn't over step his powers for political reasons, your eyes have blinders on them and they'll never come off. The grand jury found him to have abused his powers.
>
You haven't even read why he was indicted. It wasn't because he called for their resignation.

He was indicted for political actions, something this prosecutor's office has done before only to have the convictions overturned and their motivations slapped silly by the appellate courts. This is their issue, not Perry's.

#14 Joe User

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Posted 16 August 2014 - 18:07

Maybe Perry can pardon himself.

 

If I remember correctly, Texas governors do not have the ability to directly pardon someone. 



#15 Hum

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Posted 16 August 2014 - 18:07

Perry isn't my favorite pick for President, but I'd vote for him in 2016.