Corrupt or Just Clueless? You Decide
I have an idea for a new television show about politics. I'd call it "Corrupt? Or Just Clueless?"
I imagine it as a sort of combination of "Meet the Press," "Judge Judy" and "The Price is Right." I told you it was about politics.
On each show, misbehaving newsmakers would be auditioned and judged for the lameness of their excuses.
A panel of celebrity judges in the fashion of "American Idol" would humiliate them further, while viewers would take a vote via phone or Internet as to whether the accused pol is truly venal or just an idiot.
I am inspired, as you might guess, by the robust closing arguments that attorney
Surely Adam's closing argument will be remembered in the annals of American legal history as the dull-knife defense.
"No one's going to say he's the sharpest knife in the drawer," Adam assured the jury, "but he's not corrupt."
In other words, don't hate him because he's a nutball whose antics earned him the nickname "Governor Goofy" from the
The Democratic ex-governor meant no harm, Adam insisted, despite the bad impression left by federal prosecutors' 24 counts against him.
He was alleged to have misused his powers as governor to extort campaign contributions from those seeking legislation, appointments or other favors. Not that there's anything wrong with that, his defense countered.
Rather, they argued, the prosecutors were trying to criminalize ways, means and horse trading through which political business has been done since the birth of the wink, the nod, the back pat and the elbow massage.
After all, said Adam, "this is a man who considered appointing
Yet Adam got me to thinking: This is hardly the first time that a newsmaker has thrown himself on the mercy of the American public and pleaded that, though he may be dumb, silly, ignorant or clueless, at least he's not a crook.
"While this is not a good day for me," the
None? That's in the eye of the beholder. He is alleged to have violated House gift rules and failed to disclose taxable income on a rental property in the
Still, the popular and personable ("Call me
Too late for that in the case of former Rep.
More recently he's been speaking at
One more possible contestant: Sen.
Not corrupt, said Kerry in his own defense, just tardy. "I don't think I dealt with (the controversy) fast enough, effectively enough," he told the
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