Politicians Receive Just Desserts for Bribery
By Andrew Potts, Marketing −
The guilty verdict rang through the federal courtroom and former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) hung his head. McDonnell and his wife, Maureen, were pronounced guilty of 14 combined counts of conspiracy, bribery and extortion. Both could face time in prison.
The trial spawned from allegations that McDonnell and his wife accepted unethical gifts and loans from Jonnie Williams, Sr., then-CEO of Star Scientific, a dietary supplement company. Under Virginia ethics law, the McDonnell’s were forbidden from taking the $120,000 in undocumented loans and gifts from Williams, especially when they allegedly gave Williams official government action on behalf of his company.
The defense argued that the gifts were political courtesies, but the prosecutors argued that the actions McDonnell took after receiving the gifts provide strong circumstantial evidence of bribery.
This trial represents the first time a Virginia governor had been indicted. The state maintains loose ethics laws due to the belief that officials would not put their own interests above the public good.
Politicians’ Duty is to Protect the Law
Louis D. Brandeis, former justice of the Supreme Court, once said, “Our government … teaches the whole people by its example. If the government becomes the lawbreaker, it breeds contempt for law; it invites every man to become a law unto himself; it invites anarchy.”
The American public once expected honesty and selflessness from its leaders. Now it’s something we must yearn for. EyeDetect™ could help keep our politicians honest. A lie detector test with an 85% accuracy rating, periodic EyeDetect screenings of our elected officials could help ensure that officials put constituents’ needs above their own.