According to state investigators, Greer devised a scheme to siphon off a cut of the donations from major Republican donors after he had fallen on hard financial times, despite a party salary of $130,000 a year.
Statewide Prosecutor William Shepherd said Greer used a company called Victory Strategies LLC to launder the money, pocketing a total of $125,161.50. Greer’s hand-picked executive director and partner in Victory Strategies, Delmar Johnson, collected another $65,093, according to an affidavit that accompanied a search warrant sought by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.
“Mr. Greer just used the money for his own personal lifestyle,” Shepherd said.
The Orlando Sentinel first disclosed the existence of the Victory Strategies contract in February, a month after Greer was forced to resign as party chair. By then, top Republican leaders had also discovered the contract and quietly forced Johnson to resign.
Mona Charen’s recent column on New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is well worth a read:
At a New Jersey town meeting, Gov. Chris Christie, the newest YouTube star for the limited government set, was reproached by an unhappy teacher. The governor, facing a budget shortfall of $11 billion, has proposed, among other economies, a one-year salary freeze for New Jersey teachers. Her voice raised in anger (that’s a normal speaking voice in my home state), Rita Wilson protested that she should be paid $83,000, the only reasonable compensation in light of her “education and experience.” Christie’s reply got an ovation: “Well, you know what? Then you don’t have to do it.”
Meet the newest conservative hero: The Trenton Truth-Teller!
That exchange with the teacher, along with other greatest hits available on YouTube of the blunt yet friendly governor’s first five months, highlight a political opportunity for Republicans.
First, the problem: How can smaller-government Republicans win elections when more and more Americans are receiving government benefits while fewer and fewer are paying taxes? In 2010, 47 percent of Americans paid no income taxes at all. Among those who do pay taxes, most pay comparatively little. Both parties have agreed to make the tax code more steeply progressive in the past two decades, to the point where the top 20 percent of earners, those with incomes above $100,000, pay 70 percent of all taxes. Accordingly, the tax issue has lost some of its political purchase.
But as Christie is demonstrating, voters are open to a new fairness argument.
Read the rest here.
At NRB, I review Rush Limbaugh: An Army of One.
Also at NRB, Horowitz and Knepper tear apart Andrew Sullivan, Patron Saint of Fail, over the Gaza flotilla attack. The outrage over Israel defending herself (with, er, paintball guns) drives home one important truth America should have learned years ago: “international opinion” is worse than worthless.
Speaking of which, you probably won’t hear much about the Turkish “peace” activists’ terror ties on MSNBC or NPR…
“As many as three million Chinese babies are hidden by their parents every year in order to get around the country’s one-child policy, a researcher has discovered.” Yeah, but America has human-rights issues of its own, so really, who are we to judge?
Here’s LifeNews on the GOP’s dereliction of duty in letting pro-abortion zealot Elena Kagan slide.
Dan Riehl opines on Jim DeMint’s “telling inconsistency” on anti-war Republican candidates.
The Pope talks immigration. Do his words actually bring anything useful to the debate? They’re written in extremely general terms that don’t speak to whether or not any given voices are describing the issue’s various facets accurately.
Via the HA Headlines, Obama’s Department of Homeland Security is trying to deport Mosab Yousef on grounds that he’s a terrorist, when in reality, he’s an anti-jihadist with a record of service spying on Hamas for Israeli intelligence. It seems to me this is the sort of thing a single phone call to Israel could clear up; unfortunately, US-Israeli relations haven’t been so hot since 44 took over.
Yet another Democrat disgrace allowed to pass with silence from Republicans.
Robert Stacy McCain’s point about Rand Paul’s partial opposition to the Civil Rights Act stemming from concerns over government overreach rather than bigotry is well taken. But I think he’d do well to familiarize himself a bit more with Rand’s record (and how it ties into his father’s) before proclaiming that “Having now crossed this bridge, however, conservatives must fight the fight we are in and not waste time wishing we had met the enemy on some other field.” Yes, conservatives will always be victimized by left-wing race baiting, but the Pauls are special cases, given how much they benefit from racists. (Hat tip: Lisa Graas)
Here is Republican Senator Orrin Hatch’s response to Mexican President Felipe Calderon’s condemnation of Arizona’s new immigration law:
The state of Arizona is stepping in where the federal government has failed. It is trying to stop waves of illegal immigrants, many of whom are dangerous gang members and drug and human traffickers, from crossing into its communities. It’s inappropriate for a head of state to question our laws, especially when the state of Arizona only acted in the best interest of its citizens and with the support of seventy percent of its people.
Boy, don’t strain yourself, Senator.
Hatch could have mentioned that Calderon’s characterization of the law as “introduc[ing] racial profiling as a basis for law enforcement” and a “human rights” violation which “opens the door to intolerance, hate, discrimination and abuse in law enforcement” is, as Byron York’s reporting on the law reveals, so dishonest as to border on slander. For instance:
Obama ignored the law’s specific stipulation that any check on a person’s immigration status can only come after a “lawful stop, detention or arrest” when a person is suspected of breaking some law — that is, as Arizona lawmakers explained in a footnote to the bill, it must come “during the enforcement of any other law or ordinance of a county, city or town or this state.”
And even after meeting that standard, the law directs that police meet a “reasonable suspicion” standard before “a reasonable attempt shall be made, when practicable, to determine the immigration status of the person…” The phrase “reasonable suspicion” means that there must be a number of specific factors that an officer can cite before taking action, and the law specifically says that prosecutors “shall not investigate complaints that are based solely on race, color or national origin.”
And even with those safeguards, the law specifies that if the person involved produces a valid Arizona driver’s license, or other forms of identification specified in the law, then that person is immediately presumed to be in the country legally. In other words, the whole question of legal or not legal becomes moot once the person produces a driver’s license — a common experience for nearly every American, regardless of his or her race or ethnicity.
He could also have mentioned that, not only is Calderon partially responsible for the hardships Arizona is trying to address, but that Mexico’s own immigration laws are far more draconian and “intolerant”:
– The Mexican government will bar foreigners if they upset “the equilibrium of the national demographics.” How’s that for racial and ethnic profiling?
– If outsiders do not enhance the country’s “economic or national interests” or are “not found to be physically or mentally healthy,” they are not welcome. Neither are those who show “contempt against national sovereignty or security.” They must not be economic burdens on society and must have clean criminal histories. Those seeking to obtain Mexican citizenship must show a birth certificate, provide a bank statement proving economic independence, pass an exam and prove they can provide their own health care.
– Illegal entry into the country is equivalent to a felony punishable by two years’ imprisonment. Document fraud is subject to fine and imprisonment; so is alien marriage fraud. Evading deportation is a serious crime; illegal re-entry after deportation is punishable by ten years’ imprisonment. Foreigners may be kicked out of the country without due process and the endless bites at the litigation apple that illegal aliens are afforded in our country (see, for example, President Obama’s illegal alien aunt — a fugitive from deportation for eight years who is awaiting a second decision on her previously rejected asylum claim).
– Law enforcement officials at all levels — by national mandate — must cooperate to enforce immigration laws, including illegal alien arrests and deportations. The Mexican military is also required to assist in immigration enforcement operations. Native-born Mexicans are empowered to make citizens’ arrests of illegal aliens and turn them in to authorities.
– Ready to show your papers? Mexico’s National Catalog of Foreigners tracks all outside tourists and foreign nationals. A National Population Registry tracks and verifies the identity of every member of the population, who must carry a citizens’ identity card. Visitors who do not possess proper documents and identification are subject to arrest as illegal aliens.
A foreign head of state hypocritically slanders American citizens before our own legislature – to the applause of one of America’s two major political parties – and the best the other party can muster is “inappropriate” (maybe an “unfortunate” if we’re lucky). As usual. Looks like the GOP’s not about to kick its habit of pulling defeat from the jaws of victory any time soon.