(Yup, there they are.)
So, California Secretary of State Kevin Shelley's troubles with the law continue.
(Photo via the Sacramento Bee. Look at how concerned he seems. Probably fretting over his inability to fire civil servants. Feel free to post captions in the "what is he thinking" vein in the comments section if you'd like.)
At issue are a series of questionable contributions and interactions with a San Francisco business woman.
It seems that within weeks of being paid with state funds for services connected to a Sunset District community center that was never built, those payees made notably large donations to Shelley's campaign. Now, people show appreciation in different ways - but, of course the nature of our current political system is to avoid the appearance of impropriety at all costs (whether we avoid actual impropriety is debatable, I suppose). So this Chron article rightly raises the question: who at the campaign didn't see a $50k check and look into things a bit? You would assume, or at least hope, that the candidate, fundraisers, consultants, and the treasurer would have a procedure in place or at least know at this advanced level what to look out for. And for a campaign this size, the treasurer is usually going to be a law firm (which it was in this case).
You should definitely read the article for the details of the head-scratchingly convenient transfers of money. Oh, I suppose the more technical term would be "money laundering."
[Ed. note: Kevin Shelley - sweetness and light to the public - is a mean man to work for. I've seen him dress down staff attempting to give him phone messages and his reputation around the Capitol is less than stellar.
There are two kinds of members - those who treat staff with respect and those who do not. Those who do not, seem to think that simply by being elected, they have become royalty or somehow better than everyone else. Think "citizen legislators" without the damn term-limits convention.
I've been privileged to work for 2 members who treated their staff very well. There's not enough money (or course credits) in the world to get me to work for a Kevin Shelley.
Mean people shouldn't be rewarded with higher office. Inconsiderate people with little regard for others shouldn't be rewarded with higher office.
So, while Kevin Shelley has never been mean to me directly, on behalf of staffers everywhere, I say, bummer for you Mr. Secretary, but I don't feel so bad.]
Update: Thanks to calraces.com for linking to this article on Shelley's legendary, lousy 'tude. Read it and you'll like him even less. We're responsible for our own leadership in this country. We only get the "bad ones" if we vote for them and let them behave that way. Blame for this falls heavily on our party as well as we, the people.