November 26, 2008

Rep. William Jefferson .... Please, Just Go Away!

UPDATE: The corruption trial of U.S. Rep. William Jefferson, D-La., will likely be delayed until 2009.

Do you believe that things come in threes? If so, perhaps there is still hope that New Orleans congressman William Jefferson will fade from sight soon. First, Kwame Kilpatrick was forced from his position as mayor of Detroit. Second, OJ Simpson was forced from his position as a sports icon.

Perhaps U.S. Rep. William Jefferson will be #3 on this list. Jefferson, seeking his 10th term in Congress, faces a December trial on charges that he took bribes, laundered money and misused his congressional office for business dealings in Africa.

Of course, the people of New Orleans can end his career on November 4 when his congressional district holds a runoff. Jefferson was the first Black elected to Congress from Louisiana since Reconstruction. But, it is time for him to go away. Since he won't retire, it is up to the people to put him away.

OJ Simpson had false hope before he was found guilty by Las Vegas jury. Perhaps Jefferson is a wee bit too confident. He addressed a few dozen family members and supporters at a restaurant in a section of eastern New Orleans still struggling to recover from Hurricane Katrina. “We look forward to a rigorous campaign but a successful outcome,” Jefferson said.

A victory in the Nov. 4 runoff would send Jefferson to a Dec. 6 general election in the heavily Democratic district against a little-known Republican.

Jefferson’s campaign stressed his influence in Washington and prominently featured pictures of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other congressional leaders joining him in touring New Orleans, still recovering from the devastation of Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

But his clout was already dropping even before his last election two years ago. By then, news had broken that he was under investigation for alleged bribery and that federal agents said they found $90,000 hidden in his freezer. He survived, winning re-election in 2006 easily, but he subsequently was stripped of a seat on the powerful House Ways and Means Committee. Last year, he was indicted on corruption charges by a federal grand jury in Virginia. Other family members also have been caught up in an unrelated scandal. Two siblings face federal corruption charges in New Orleans and a third has pleaded guilty.

Jefferson has denied wrongdoing, while refusing to discuss details of the accusations against him. Sounds like Kwame and OJ, huh?!

What do you think villagers? Ain't it time for this guy to just go away?


RiPPa said...

I will say this...

in the court of public opinion, this looks bad for the guy. But, I do believe that though he may be guilty of wrong doing, keeping in mind that he has yet to be convicted, we (black people) must never forget the forces that have worked against us over the years.

If you don't understand where I'm coming from, and think I'm refering to COINTELPRO or something like that, I'm not. I'm speaking of National Security Memorandum #46 put together in the 70's to create division among Blacks in American, as well as to create a division of Blacks in America and in Africa.

Trust me, the stuff is deep. And lets be honest: there are many white politicians who are caught up in scandal and corruption; even more so than the exposure of black politicians in any wrong doing. But its always magnified when its a brother.

Until he's convicted, I'm gonna adhere to the "innocent until proven guilty" train of thought because that's what justice in America is about. And if we as Black people want equal justice, we're wrong in convicting one of our own in the public eye before the court does.

Trust me...

they love seeing that stuff...

Divide & Conqor...

the best strategy ever.

Unknown said...

RiPPa - I would be interested to learn more about National Security Memo #46. I'm always interested in learning about Black history so that we learn from it and don't repeat it.

One thing that I've learned in history is that there is no upside to protecting a scoundrel just because he has as much melanin in his body as I do.

Rep. Jefferson had $90,000 in his freezer. Can there be any innocent recent for a brother to have $90k in his kitchen... in his freezer?

I feel ya on the need for 'innocence until guilty'. However, I also think that having a political office is different from having a day in court. I think that Jefferson should be replaced in his political office...

Mac Daddy Tribute Blog said...

The case against this guy is overwhelming. Ant it's not just him. His sister and other relatives are tied into it. They had a system of fraud and bribery going. It's time for him to go.

Unknown said...

MacDaddy - There are two ways that he can go. He could resign. The voters can elect somebody else. Which do you think will happen first?

SjP said...

C'mon now Villager! Give the brotha a break. He just thought it best to keep his 90-grand in the ice box in anticipation of the stock market crashing.