After months of investigations and speculation, PA Attorney General Tom Corbett arrested 12 individuals, all democrats, in connection with his probe into lawmakers’ illegally using taxpayer dollars to fund political campaigns, last week. One former House leader, one sitting representative, and 10 current or former caucus staffers were nabbed by agents of the AG’s office and delivered for arraignment in Harrisburg.
Among those taken into custody on Friday were:
Former House Minority Whip Rep. Michael Veon
Rep. Sean Ramaley, candidate for state Senate in Beaver County
Micheal Manzo, former chief of staff to House Majoirty Leader Bill DeWeese
Rachel Manzo, Executive Director of the House democratic Policy Committee
Scott Brubaker, former Director of Administration for the House democratic Caucus
Jennifer Brubaker, Director of the House democratic Caucus legislative research office
Brett Cott, former policy analyst for House Majority Leader Bill DeWeese
Joe Foreman, Chief Counsel for House democratic Whip Keith McCall
Annamarie Peretta-Rosepink, former legislative assistant to Michael Veon
Steven Keefer, former director of technology for the House dems
Earl Mosely, former director of personnel for the House dems
Patrick LaVelle, former research analyst
The charges against these twelve vary between conflict of interest, theft of services, and criminal conspiracy. Basically, it breaks down like this: House democratic staffers, who were getting paid by the Commonwealth to perform state government functions, were actually working on the campaigns of their bosses and using state-owned equipment on the Commonwealth’s time. Their bosses then turned around and gave them substantial bonuses for their work and reimbursement for their expenses. These bonuses went from as little as $500 to as much as $25,000. The reimbursements went as high as $160,000 as compensation for jett-setting around the nation raising money for democrat candidates.
I wrote a 50-page journal article for law school about this very topic in May. Now, I only analyzed BonusGate as it pertained to PA ethics law, specifically conflicts of interest provisions. However, the first 6 pages gives a detailed background as to who did what and when. To access the pdf document, click on the link above.
I applaud AG Corbett for having the guts to actually prosecute these crooks. These 12 people (and probably others who have yet to be named) bilked the PA taxpayer of nearly $4 million. Someone needed to try and reign in the corruption and waste occurring in Harrisburg. I am the glad the Commonwealth’s chief law enforcement official finally decided to take the lead.