Things are getting ugly for Republican Governor Bob McDonnell of Virginia.
Wednesday morning, even Chuck Todd was condemning the Republican governor, saying that McDonnell’s national hopes and political career have been turned upside down in a matter of months as every week new details come out about his gifts scandal. Instead of national ambitions, Todd said, “Now he just has to hope he can keep from being charged with a crime.”
As federal and state investigations swirl around the $145,000 given to the Virginia Republican and his family, state Senator Barbara Favola (D-Arlington) was the first elected official to directly call on him to resign. And late last night CNN’s Peter Hamby tweeted “text from top GOPer just now on latest McDonnell revelation: ‘that’s not survivable.’
News host Bruce DePuyt tweeted, “Sen. Barbara Favola (D-Arlington) calls on Bob McDonnell to resign. Sees “no point” in him remaining governor given latest reports”:
Sen. Barbara Favola (D-Arlington) calls on Bob McDonnell to resign. Sees "no point" in him remaining governor given latest reports.
The story Hamby was referring to was a damning Washington Post article titled, “McDonnell’s corporation, wife allegedly benefited from $120,000 more from donor”.
The money to the corporation and Maureen McDonnell brings to $145,000 the amount Williams gave to assist the McDonnell family in 2011 and 2012 – funds that are now at the center of federal and state investigations.
McDonnell’s scandal has been growing at a steady pace, getting worse with each revelation, as is the usual course of really damaging scandals. It’s not going away. Whereas he once seemed merely embattled, he now seems like a contagious disease, with even Republicans backing away from him even before his term ends this January.
It’s also not helping that the Post revealed yet another big donation from the Star Scientific CEO to McDonnell’s daughter for her wedding, only this time it’s for the eldest daughter. Another wedding. Yes, that’s right. The company McDonnell was hawking was donating to his family left and right. Some call this taking advantage of the free market, but it is more like criminal behavior, though I grant you that the two can be hard to distinguish.
In government, they are much more exact about what differentiates white collar cleverness regarding bilking your job for every last cent from ethical behavior, which is just another reason Republicans hate government.
There’s wild speculation today that state Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli will be one of the first running in the other direction. However, Cuccinelli has his own problems with accepting undisclosed donations from the exact same CEO. Although he’s trying to rebrand himself as a moderate, ready to lead type of person (the usual fringer cover), you might recall him as the Republican who compared women’s health to slavery. Or perhaps you recognize him as the person causing Republican women to flee the Republican ticket due to his “dangerous… anti-woman health agenda.”
When the Republican Party says your scandal is not survivable and a Democrat (party of perhaps too much civility and a well earned reputation for timidness) is calling for your resignation, it’s got to be pretty bad. After all, the Republican party stood behind Ensign and Vitter and re-ran Appalachian Trail hiker and post abandoner Mark Sanford. But when Chuck Todd says all you can do is hope you aren’t charged criminally, well…
Things are going from bad to worse for the Republican Governor of Virginia.
Republican Gov. Bob McDonnell Can Only Hope He Can Avoid Being Charged with a Crime was written by Sarah Jones for PoliticusUSA.
Ms. Jones is a Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Since joining Politicus in February of 2009, Sarah has been quoted by Talking Points Memo, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, The Richard Dawkins Foundation and more. Sarah co-hosts Politicus Radio with Jason Easley and is the political correspondent for KPTR 1450's California Woman 411, hosted by Dee Jae Cox. Sarah is an award-winning producer with a background in TV/Film (TV host, news anchor, producer & writer) and a member of the Screen Actors Guild/AFTRA and SPJ. Sarah graduated Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa with a major in Psychology & minor in Latin. She spends her free time dancing (ballet) and horseback riding (English).