Daily Revolt

November 04, 2007

Fred Thompson Top Aide was a Drug Dealer

And this guy wants to be President of the United States:
Republican presidential candidate Fred D. Thompson has been crisscrossing the country since early this summer on a private jet lent to him by a businessman and close adviser who has a criminal record for drug dealing.

Thompson selected the businessman, Philip Martin, to raise seed money for his White House bid. Martin is one of four campaign co-chairmen and the head of a group called the "first day founders." Campaign aides jokingly began to refer to Martin, who has been friends with Thompson since the early 1990s, as the head of "Thompson's Airforce."

Martin entered a plea of guilty to the sale of 11 pounds of marijuana in 1979; the court withheld judgment pending completion of his probation. He was charged in 1983 with violating his probation and with multiple counts of felony bookmaking, cocaine trafficking and conspiracy. He pleaded no contest to the cocaine-trafficking and conspiracy charges, which stemmed from a plan to sell $30,000 worth of the drug, and was continued on probation.

Thompson's campaign said the candidate was not aware of the multiple criminal cases, for which Martin served no jail time. All are described in public court records.

[...]Martin was not subjected to the campaign's standard vetting process because "he's a longtime friend."

Thompson isn't the only Republican Presidential candidate with poor judgement:
In December 2004, President Bush nominated Mr. Kerik, a former New York police commissioner, to head the federal Department of Homeland Security. Seven days later, Mr. Kerik withdrew as a nominee.

A cascade of questions followed about his judgment as a public official, not least that he had inappropriately lobbied city officials on behalf of Interstate Industrial, a construction firm suspected of links to organized crime. Mr. Giuliani defended Mr. Kerik, a friend and business partner, whom he had recommended to the Bush administration. But he also tried to shield himself from accusations that he had ignored Mr. Kerik’s failings.

“I was not informed of it,” Mr. Giuliani said then, when asked if he had been warned about Mr. Kerik’s relationship with Interstate before appointing him to the police post in 2000.

Mr. Giuliani amended that statement last year in testimony to a state grand jury. He acknowledged that the city investigations commissioner, Edward J. Kuriansky, had told him that he had been briefed at least once. The former mayor said, though, that neither he nor any of his aides could recall being briefed about Mr. Kerik’s involvement with the company.

But a review of Mr. Kuriansky’s diaries, and investigators’ notes from a 2004 interview with him, now indicate that such a session indeed took place. What is more, Mr. Kuriansky also recalled briefing one of Mr. Giuliani’s closest aides, Dennison Young Jr., about Mr. Kerik’s entanglements with the company just days before the police appointment, according to the diaries he compiled at the time and his later recollection to the investigators.

Speaking of politicians with poor judgement:
Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton’s political camp struck back on Saturday against rivals who were attacking her as overly secretive, circulating legal arguments from a Clinton ally asserting that the Clintons are not blocking the release of presidential papers about their discussions in the White House in the 1990s.

[...]In pushing to clarify the issue, the Clinton camp is trying to correct an image of Mrs. Clinton, a Democratic presidential candidate, that is being painted by her critics — that she is too secretive, and that because she will not release the papers more quickly, her experience argument lacks credibility.

[...]In a 2002 letter from Mr. Clinton to the National Archives, which controls his papers, Mr. Clinton wrote that documents including communication between the two Clintons “should generally be considered for withholding” until 2012.

Obama is calling out Slick Hillary:
Sen. Barack Obama leveled a fresh round of criticism at Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton yesterday, accusing his rival for the Democratic nomination of following a campaign plan that prizes calculation over candor and that is aimed more at winning the election than uniting the country.

[...]"As we saw in the debate last week, it encourages vague, calculated answers to suit the politics of the moment, instead of clear, consistent principles about how you would lead America," he said. "It teaches you that you can promise progress for everyday people while striking a bargain with the very special interests who crowd them out."

In a telephone interview, Obama described Clinton's campaign as one that embraces the conventional wisdom of Washington, which he said argues that candidates "should be vague and avoid definitive answers in campaigns, in part to make yourself a smaller target to Republican attacks. . . . She has mastered that in this primary."

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