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Tag Archives: Tim Cahill
If federal prosecutors hoped the trial of John O’Brien might have focused our collective attention on the sins of political patronage, they seem to have failed. It’s the power of the US Attorney’s office that increasingly draws scrutiny. And not for the first time.
The Boston Herald has been having a field day with the latest developments in the U.S. Attorney’s prosecution of former Probation Department commissioner John J. O’Brien. Should we be “shocked – shocked(!)” at the fact that even our own Massachusetts Trial court maintained a list of politically connected job seekers, much like the list kept by O’Brien?
Not really. As the political scientist Daniel J. Elazar wrote years ago in “Marketplace and Commonwealth, and the Three Political Cultures,” Massachusetts has an individualistic political culture – it behaves like a marketplace, including politicians assisting job seekers in exchange for support.
Lost in the wake of the Marathon bombing and the senate race was John O’Brien’s good news-bad news week. The good news for the former Probation commissioner was he was found not guilty of bribery charges brought in the state court. The bad news was a superseding indictment in federal court charging him with seventeen counts of bribery.
In the realm of political culture, is this just another case of Puritan prosecutors like Carmen Ortiz and Martha Coakley attacking Irish politicians like John O’Brien and Tim Cahill?
A few small items caught my eye on the Boston Globe’s story today Cahill to pay $100,000 to settle case.
First was there policy learning in this case? Policy learning is a change of thinking in a relevant community about a policy. In that sense I would be confident that Attorney General Martha Coakley has succeeded in persuading politicians that running state funded television ads touting one’s credentials during an election is no longer acceptable conduct (it had been for years).
Last spring, I noted that it’s not easy being Attorney General, particularly if you are interested in moving on to higher office. Can Martha Coakley beat the curse of the AG?
If you put that question to a jury, I suspect they’d deadlock.
So was Attorney General Martha Coakley’s decision to indict former State Treasurer Tim Cahill for allegedly using Lottery ads to enhance his gubernatorial campaign a good or a poor decision? Our opinion on that should not depend on yesterday’s inconclusive outcome. Nonetheless at least some of the twelve jurors failed to see the criminal menace in Cahill’s actions that Coakley insists is there.
One of the more interesting aspects of the Cahill indictment has been the mixed reaction it has gotten among political elites. What might this divided opinion mean for Attorney General Martha Coakley and former Treasurer Tim Cahill?
Professor Ubertaccio joined Glen Johnson of the Boston Globe and Pat Wilmot of Common Cause to discuss the charges against Tim Cahill on the Emily Rooney Show.
Will Justice be served if Tim Cahill goes to jail for spending taxpayer money on lottery ads in the midst of the 2010 campaign?
This blog is interrupted by Breaking News:
Cambridge, MA: AG Martha Coakley announced today that she has indicted the entire Cambridge city council.