Tuesday, January 9, 2007

Richardson's Rule By Intimidation

According to the Associated Press, Speaker Richardson is on the hunt for those who helped fuel the rumors of his alleged extramarital affair. If you think that Porter and Kahn are shaking in their shoes, think again. The question is, what weapon does one carry when hunting for Republicans? Photographs? Threats regarding leadership posts or committee assignments? Whatever his weapon, it's a shame that Richardson is more than willing to use his position as Speaker to carry out a personal vendetta. He doesn't even do it quietly: he tells the press for God's sake. On his list of criteria for legislation that would be considered, perhaps he should've added, "cannot be sponsored by someone who accused me of having an affair."

No doubt, Richardson didn't become Speaker by being a nice guy. This "hunt" is consistent with his heavy-handed way of dealing with pretty much everything under the Dome. Remember him yelling at the GPTA delegation in the gallery last year? He is known for his temper and his tirades. This is an interesting approach, however. One would think that the Speaker would be working not to give this story legs, but instead, he is fueling the fire with statements like this to the press: "I want to know who else was behind it," he said, adding with a smile: "I'll tell them I didn't like it." That strategy makes me think that there's more to come, and that the Speaker is trying to tamp down the flames before the House catches fire.

Perhaps I missed it, but I have yet to hear the Speaker deny the alleged affair. AGL also chose not to comment on the alleged affair, saying that they as a company had always acted properly. He called it poison, called it manufactured, called it stirred, but never simply called it rubbish. I have a suggestion. If there is photographic evidence relative to these allegations, then publish it. After all, if he is innocent, the pictures would clear his name. See, wouldn't that be easy? So, let's see the pictures. Don't hold your breath.

Today, the question smart people are asking is what caused Burkhalter to back away from the race for Speaker.

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