By Joshlin Sheridan, Marketing —
The Robert Mendez Case
In an election, it can be hard to tell the difference between a gift to a certain campaign and a bribe in exchange for political power. Recently a five-year investigation about questionable campaign contributions involving New Jersey Senator Robert Mendez was finally dropped because prosecutors ruled that they did not have enough evidence. Why do these types of cases go on for so long and why is it so hard to prosecute politicians?
Rigid Definitions of Corruption
Law Professor Peter J. Henning believes that it is hard to distinguish between corruption and legality because of the Supreme Court’s narrow definition of what constitutes public corruption. Therefore, crimes that may outwardly seem like bribery or extortion may in fact be considered “legal” according to the written law. For example, in 2014 former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell was charged in a case of bribery for accepting over $175,000 from a businessman who sought after political help. While the Supreme Court described the case as distasteful, in the end, the justices decided that prosecuting him was not within their power.
Promoting Integrity among Politicians
Whatever your stance is on these recent charges of political corruption, it is clear that efforts should be made to keep politicians honest. In order to do so, U.S. candidates running for office could be required to take a lie detection test such as EyeDetect®. EyeDetect® is an Ocular-motor deception test that uses new eye detection software. This lie detector test accuracy is 86%, comparable to the polygraph. The test is non-invasive and works through monitoring eye behaviors as participants answer questions on a computer. If potential candidates were asked questions regarding their acceptance of bribes or other corrupt activities in the past, this could help screen out those who would be likely to engage in such activities while in office.
The only question remains: Would political candidates be willing to take such a test?