Did Blago Sabotage Richardson?

January 4, 2009 at 8:14 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Governor Richardson is withdrawing his nomination for the commerce department, due to an ongoing and widely-reported investigation in New Mexico.  His withdrawal now raises the question what the heck is going on with Obama’s vetting process?!  Here’s one point of view I found on TPM by commenter “kozmik”:

I’m sure they knew an investigation was ongoing, but decided it didn’t merit disqualifying him.

Then Blago happens, and it changes the political zeitgeist. There also may have been changes in the investigation, due to the Blago coverage, or due to real developments in the case. The press certainly loves a vague association to build dramatic narratives.

I’m not so sure Blago is the excuse here.  Sure, senses are heightened to any faint display of political corruption, but regardless of Blago, any story involving the words “Richardson” and “investigation” would have sent news media tongues wagging.  According to the New York Times, Blago’s investigation was no secret.  The investigation, on-going since August, was first reported in The Albuquerque Journal.  Now ABC News reports that Obama’s transition team didn’t feel Richardson was forthcoming enough about the investigation before being offered the job.  Pa-leeeease!  Obama’s team should have known better–why gamble with the president-elect’s good standing with the press, his auspicious start to executive power in Washington with a drawn-out and rather embarrassing hearing process on Capitol Hill?


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