Saturday, April 11, 2009

Rendell Defends Another Big Donor

While not being quite as arrogant as Blagojevich he certainly resembles him in some ways. Brad Bumsted at the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review writes another story about a donor to Ed Rendell's campaign that received a no-bid contract. Is it me or was(is) there a hugh fury about no-bid contracts in Luzerne County? The amount of no-bid contracts by Rendell is evoking crys of "pay-to-play."

Rendell on Thursday strongly denied the allegations, saying the contract had nothing to do with campaign contributions.

F. Kenneth Bailey of the Texas law firm Bailey Perrin Bailey LLP donated $59,200 in cash and airfare to Rendell in the seven months before the contract award and $31,900 after the agreement was signed, records show. He gave $25,000 to the Democratic Governors Association.

Bailey did not return phone calls for comment.

"Ken Bailey would have gotten the case whether I knew him, or whether or not he had ever contributed to me," Rendell said.

On that note Governor does Pennsylvania lack qualified lawyers to defend the state?? Does the state of Texas get the tax dollars or the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania?

"This is huge pay-to-play. That's all it is," said Mark Schwartz, a former staffer for the late House Speaker K. Leroy Irvis, D-Oakland. A potential judgment or settlement in a pharmaceutical case could be worth "hundreds of millions of dollars," said Schwartz, a Bryn Mawr lawyer.

Bailey Perrin would get 15 percent of any award, but nothing if it loses the case.

Rendell and most of Harrisburg still don't get it. The public wants more accountability and integrity from its government. If it looks like a dog and smells like a dog we don't care that it was groomed. We expect and should be able to read that the values demonstrated by our leaders inspire us to act in the same way. What this lesson teaches us is money leads to an abuse of power and privilege.

Brad Bumsted can be reached at or 717-787-1405.

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