Sounds familiar: Press treats Perry’s indictment as a political scandal

posted at 2:01 pm on August 17, 2014 by Noah Rothman

Democrats appear to be distancing themselves from an indictment presented against Texas Gov. Rick Perry relating to public corruption charges. Republicans are gleefully framing the charges as the result of political payback from a prideful district attorney who the governor had attempted to oust following her drunken driving arrest. The press is casting Perry’s predicament merely as a stain on his record while he prepares to mount another presidential bid. What few are discussing are the merits of the charges the governor is facing. That sounds familiar.

“We don’t settle political differences with indictments in this country,” Perry told reporters on Saturday. “It is outrageous that someone would use political theatrics to rip away at the very fabric of our state’s constitution.”

“Just as I have following every legislative session during my service as governor, I exercised this authority to veto funding for an office whose leadership had lost the public’s confidence by acting inappropriately and unethically,” he added in his own defense. But it appears increasingly unlikely Perry will need to mount one.

“This is not a slam dunk case against Gov. Perry,” University of Houston Law Center professor David Kwok told USA Today.

Of course, the politics of this episode are another matter. As Newsbuster’s noted, The New York Times is treating Perry’s troubles like a political matter rather than a serious allegation of corruption.

“The indictment left Mr. Perry, a Republican, the first Texas governor in nearly 100 years to face criminal charges and presented a major roadblock to his presidential ambitions at the very time that he had been showing signs of making a comeback,” a story in the Times read. “The indictment could mar the legacy of Mr. Perry, the longest-serving governor in Texas history, as his tenure nears an end.”

On Friday, like a plot out of Shakespeare, Mr. Perry’s attempt to control one of the few things of substance in the state that was out of his reach led to two felony charges that threaten to tarnish his legacy and derail his hopes for a second presidential run.

It was a stunning rebuke to Mr. Perry. But it also set in motion a battle of competing narratives over just what kind of overreach the indictment reflects. Democrats say the charges describe the arrogant overreach of a governor with unchecked power. Republicans took up Mr. Perry’s argument on Saturday that the excess was in the investigation and indictment themselves, which they describe as political in nature and extremely dubious in legality.

It is a familiar pattern. When the substance of the charges leveled against Chris Christie and Scott Walker began to fizzle, the press also shifted the narrative from coverage of a significant breach of the public trust to speculation about how the charges would affect their political futures. In this case, the shift in tone in the press occurred with lightning speed, which is perhaps indicative of just how shallow the charges Perry is facing truly are.

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Compare and contrast how the liberal msm treats this story on Perry to how they cover Democrat District Atty. Dallas County Craig Watkins and his county SUV wreck, where he was on his cell phone and hit another car, then he covered it up, used the foriture money from drug bust to pay off the other driver ($45,000) and the same money ($11,000) to fix the SUV.

Watkins is an atty, he is the chief law enforement person.

But does not follow the law. or just google Craig Watkins news

Story came out last Thursday.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on August 18, 2014 at 8:32 AM

Too, any liberal news paper following the story of John Wiley Price Dallas County “comish”. $950,000 in bribe money to rig county bids to his buddies, the FBI has the goods on him, he is a guilty as sin, but the other Democrats in Dallas county will not even prevent him voteing on more bids while the trial goes on.

google the indicment, he is pure dirt and a org. crime operation.

google John Wiley Price……

the msm operation is a joke/crime/ they live by lies and they will die by their own lies

APACHEWHOKNOWS on August 18, 2014 at 8:36 AM

wiki has John Wiley Price full

APACHEWHOKNOWS on August 18, 2014 at 9:15 AM

Compare it also to the Atlanta teaching scandal. It involved 58 schools, 35 “educators”, and wasted millions of tax dollars. This scandal includes charges of racketeering, malfeasance, and conspiracy.

Heard of it? Yeah, one story or so.

And they’re calling that overkill.

Meanwhile, what is Perry accused of?

Obeying the law.

itsspideyman on August 18, 2014 at 10:16 AM

Somebody posted the Texas statute the other day on coercion. As resigning is no part of Lemburg’s “official function” or “official duty” coercing her to resign, wouldn’t qualify as illegal coercion.

Sure, she has to “officially resign” but every officer resigns the same way, it doesn’t make it a function or duty of the office. When libs free-associate like this, they put all our liberties in jeopardy. Especially if this crap can pass muster to a judge.

This is a no-brainer. Resigning has to do with whether or not she is the officer, not how the office is conducted. It’s just scary what arguments can pass before a judge these days.

Axeman on August 18, 2014 at 10:18 AM

You people who didn’t defend Palin allowed this to happen. It started with her and it was successful. And so now they are going down the list. Great job, RINOs and GOP hacks.

cptacek on August 18, 2014 at 11:45 AM

After having served on a Federal Grand Jury many moons ago, an experience NOT SOON FORGOTTEN: I’ll damn guarantee there is truth to the statement:
“A good prosecutor could indict a HAM SANDWITCH.”

Missilengr on August 18, 2014 at 1:51 PM

The rest of the rational world treats it as a joke.

bour3 on August 18, 2014 at 2:24 PM

This is a no-brainer. Resigning has to do with whether or not she is the officer, not how the office is conducted. It’s just scary what arguments can pass before a judge these days.

Axeman on August 18, 2014 at 10:18 AM

But here is what the indictment says:

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”

{shudder}…it’s her official duty to continue in her post to carry out her responsibilities…that’s a specific duty…to continue to do everything she does….

In other words her placement in the office which makes anything her official duty, which is the criteria to decide what is her official duty, is IS, itself, a specific duty of her office.

So could we prosecute people who resign for “refusal to do their duty”? Sounds like it.

Axeman on August 18, 2014 at 4:16 PM