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9/28/16

US: Corruption Unchained - by Frank Vogl

The U.S. Department of Justice has announced that it will not seek a new trial of the former Governor of the state of Virginia, Robert McDonnell and his wife, Maureen McDonnell on charges of corruption.

A jury had found them both guilty in 2014 for receiving gifts of over $175,000 from a businessman. However, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the convictions in a June 2016 ruling.

Government prosecutors, who could have decided to try the case again, announced on September 7th:

“After carefully considering the Supreme Court’s recent decision and the principles of federal prosecution, we have made the decision not to pursue the case further.”

As a result, prosecuting corruption by U.S. public officials has just become far more difficult.

Lobbyists and politicians can feel more confident that their myriad exchanges and relationships are less likely to lead to corruption prosecutions.

The United States, once an admirable leader on combatting political corruption, has now fallen into line with the lax standards of business-political relationships that pervade many other countries.

While left-wing Democratic politicians, notably Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, rail against corruption in U.S. politics, the mainstream Democratic Party officials at the helm of the Justice Department have accepted an increasingly narrow definition of political corruption.

The Supreme Court concluded that the McDonnells did nothing criminally wrong when Virginia businessman Jonnie Williams, Sr., gave them a gold Rolex watch, a Ferrari, $50,000 in financial aid for their beach house and a significant portion of the costs of their daughter’s wedding.

Newspaper readers may be forgiven for believing this is the kind of political corruption found in Third World or former Soviet countries – but it is perfectly legal in the United States today.

Read more: US: Corruption Unchained - The Globalist

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