2011 - The Year We Take Back Congress and Make Obama's Life Hell!

Thursday, February 08, 2007

A Little Less Philliness (redux)

State Sen. Vincent J. Fumo used taxpayer and charity money to pay for everything from political polls to power tools, from cars to farm equipment, from errands to shopping sprees, a grand jury charged yesterday.

Among the more than $2 million in allegedly illicit spending: Fumo (D., Phila.) hired private detectives to tail ex-girlfriends and dig up dirt on political rivals - including Gov. Rendell.

"Sen. Fumo didn't just step over the line," U.S. Attorney Patrick L. Meehan said yesterday. "He completely ignored it." (TM - That's a South Philly Democrat, through-and-through!)

The grand jury indictment - 267 pages, 139 counts, carrying a possible 10-year prison sentence - came out one day after Fumo delivered a dramatic speech in the Senate in which he dismissed the pending charges as "falsities and half-truths."

Yesterday, Fumo was silent. Today, he will be fingerprinted and appear before a federal magistrate. Tomorrow, his lawyers have promised to hold a news conference to discuss the charges.

Fumo, 63, who has served as senator since 1978, was depicted by Meehan as a "greedy, manipulative" politician angling for ways to make the public and charities pay for his lavish lifestyle.

The indictment says Fumo once told a confidant that he had an acronym for one goal in his life - spending "OPM," that is, "other people's money."

"Because he was delivering large amounts of money to his Philadelphia constituents with one hand," Meehan said, "Vincent Fumo felt entitled to reach deeply into the pockets of Pennsylvania taxpayers with the other hand."

Fumo is charged with fraud, conspiracy, and with directing a cover-up - ordering computers scrubbed of e-mails after The Inquirer broke the news that the FBI was investigating him.

The indictment says Fumo exploited his Senate budget and power; the South Philadelphia charity he helped fund, Citizens' Alliance for Better Neighborhoods; and the Independence Seaport Museum for his personal and political use.

The Trekmedic advises:

Click on the link in the title and read the entire article. Try not to lose your dinner in the process!


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