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AP Bemoans Nagin: ‘From Reformer To Convict’

From a tear-soaked Associated Press:

New Orleans ex-mayor: From reformer to convict

By KEVIN McGILL | February 13, 2014

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Sixteen years after he burst on the New Orleans political scene as a charming, reform-minded businessman vowing to clean up city government, former Mayor Ray Nagin walked out of a federal courthouse as the glum embodiment of how far a politician can fall.

What a lead. Notice the contortions the AP goes through to make us think of Ray Nagin as a reformer rather than a crook. In reality, he seems to have begun his crime spree as soon as he go into office.

Nagin was convicted Wednesday on 20 criminal counts stemming from his two terms as New Orleans mayor from 2002 to 2010, including the recovery that followed Hurricane Katrina in 2005. He is scheduled for sentencing June 11 — his 58th birthday.

How cruel!

Nagin was a cable company executive and political newcomer when he succeeded Marc Morial in 2002. Soon after taking office, he announced a crackdown on municipal corruption, starting with the city’s vehicle safety inspection stations and issuing permits to non-eligible taxi drivers.

But federal prosecutors say his own corrupt acts began during his first term, continued through the Katrina catastrophe and flourished in his second term

Nagin is perhaps best remembered for his impassioned pleas for help after the levees broke during Hurricane Katrina, and his city descended into chaos.

Really? We suspect he is best remembered for failing to employ the hundreds of school buses to evacuate the citizens of New Orleans. And for talking about how important it was that ‘Chocolate City’ remain Chocolate.

He was convicted of accepting bribes in exchange for helping businessmen secure millions of dollars in city work. The federal jury found Nagin guilty of 20 of 21 counts…

Nagin, a Democrat, was indicted in January 2013 on charges he accepted hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes — money, free vacation trips and truckloads of free granite for his family business — from businessmen who wanted work from the city or Nagin’s support for various projects…

The AP waited until the 12th paragraph of their word salad to mention Nagin’s party affiliation. Which they only mention in passing. Still, most of the media reports on Nagin don’t even mention it at all. (See below.)

The charges against Nagin included one overarching conspiracy count along with six counts of bribery, nine counts of wire fraud, one count of money laundering conspiracy and four counts of filing false tax returns.

These all sound like resume enhancers for a Democrat. In fact, Nagin’s future in the party probably just go brighter.

The charges carry a variety of maximum sentences ranging from three to 20 years, but how long he would serve was unclear and will depend on a pre-sentence investigation and various sentencing guidelines.

Don’t worry. He will get the mildest slap on the wrist. For several reasons. In any case, Nagin’s party affiliation was just buried by the print media.

From the Washington Free Beacon:

The Man With No Party

February 12, 2014

CBS Evening News, NBC Nightly News and ABC World News broadcasts gave brief mention to the conviction of former New Orleans mayor Ray Nagin Wednesday on 20 federal counts, including bribery and conspiracy, but all three omitted the fact that he was a Democrat.

CBS anchor Scott Pelley and ABC fill-in anchor George Stephanopoulos referred to him as the “former mayor” while NBC’s Brian Williams called him “controversial.” …

By the way, even the ‘paper of record,’ the New York Times, held off mentioning Nagin’s party until the ninth paragraph of their very flowery article. And, like the AP, they only mentioned it in passing:

Mr. Nagin was elected in 2002 as an outsider dismissive of the old political machines. A cable TV executive with no prior governing experience, Mr. Nagin, a Democrat, was impatient with the stubborn rhythm of the city’s bureaucracy, a quality that endeared him to the media, reform advocates and upscale voters.

Perhaps the news media just assume it goes without saying.

Anyway, for the record, Mr. Nagin is the first mayor in the New Orleans history to ever be charged and convicted of corruption. Which is a scandal in itself.

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Thursday, February 13th, 2014. Comments are currently closed.

One Response to “AP Bemoans Nagin: ‘From Reformer To Convict’”

  1. Rusty Shackleford

    Po’ po’ Ray.

    Ain’ nuffin’ woss den havin’ da MAN comes down on yu like dat.

    Days all racciiisss-es ennyhoo. So donte confronte dat. Yu juss call dems da raccisss-es dat day iz.


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