Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Larry Craig--the gift that keeps on giving

I'm somewhat baffled by Tappy McWidestance's position here. I know that a Republican like him would rather be considered a child killer or a Klansman rather than being gay, but it seems like a very difficult road, both politically and legally.

From a political standpoint, his party sees him as toxic. They don't need him to "clear his name" to hold the seat, Idaho is as safely red on a statewide basis as any state in the union. he can't credibly speak on any of his pet "family" issues, and he is an obvious gift that keeps on giving to Senate democrats who, while unable to touch Idaho, can use his presence in the Senate as a bludgeon in swing state campaigns.

And legally? Judgment has been entered in the case. It is VERY difficult to withdraw a guilty plea after entry of judgment. That might happen in those cases where informed consent was absent (the drunken public defender who couldn't explain the consequences, the mentally challenged defendant who didn't understand the nature of his admission, but a college-educated United States senator? That is a tough sell.

His team is mumbling about "constitutional" questions. Talk about another tough sell. He was properly advised of his Miranda rights, and there was no unreasonable search or seizure involved. I doubt that tapping and hand waving is protected "speech" when it relates to the solicitation of lewd conduct. if so, then you could go back and unwind every solicitation conviction on record. I also don't see any entrapment defense, when at least according to the police report, Craig was the instigator.

Another consideration is that this probably wasn't the good senator's first foray into this seamy world. Now that people beyond the flyover states know his name, there are stories to be told--and money to be made.

The clincher, though, would be that any withdrawal of the guilty plea could result in a trial, a tawdry public spectacle of the kind that muni court has never seen before. In open court, all bets are off, and the evidence is in, evidence that went away with a plea to a lesser charge. THAT could be fun.

1 comment:

Karlo said...

I figured he would have made a permanent home under a rock by this point but I guess family-values bathroom-cruisin' gay senators are made of tougher stuff. Hopefully he'll stick around. We can always use another poster child for the hypocritic right. At this rate, we should be able to fill an entire calendar with some extra faces for the holidays.