Saturday, July 30, 2005
Coin-Gate the scandal that keeps on giving.
From The Toledo Blade we learn of the first convictions in the Ohio Republicans slowly unraveling story of malfeasance.
Two former aides to Gov. Bob Taft — former Chief of Staff Brian Hicks and his former executive assistant, Cherie Carroll — were convicted and fined by a judge yesterday for taking gifts from coin dealer Tom Noe — a political climber who golfed with the governor and sought audiences with President Bush.The complete article has the details and pictures of the pair looking less than contrite. But that is probably because they still don't believe they did anything wrong. Let us pray that they are the beginning of the avalanche.
Mr. Noe, over the 1980s and 1990s, worked hard to painstakingly chisel a powerful image — one for the governor’s staff to revere and for power brokers to admire as he spread hundreds of thousands of dollars across the state to Republican candidates.
Along that vein, he treated lobbyists and Mr. Taft’s staff to expensive meals and invited them on vacations. They helped him gain seats on some of the most influential boards in Ohio.
He wanted to be a Bush pioneer and succeeded, raising more than $100,000 for the President’s re-election.
That marble image has now faded, and his legacy may be singlehandedly dismantling the decade-long GOP grip on state politics: The scene yesterday morning, in a Franklin County courtroom, may have been an early act in that political drama.
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