Four present and former public officials from northwest Ohio just pleaded no contest in the Tom Noe campaign donation laundering case.
One of them was S.O.B. member Maggie Thurber, a Lucas County commissioner.
I just sent her this email:
I was wondering if you would be posting something on your no contest plea in the Noe campaign donation laundering case today. I and many others would very much like to learn your thoughts on this issue.
I am not a constituent, only a concerned Ohioan and a conservative opinion writer. However, I have always taken the position that public officials should resign after convictions on ethics charges, crimes related to the office or any felony. I hope you recognize your mistake and seek to earn back the trust of the public by stepping down as commissioner.
I also want to stress this opinion is mine alone, and is related only to your position as an official sworn to uphold Ohio law. You also happen to be a blogger, and I welcome and encourage your continued writing on issues close to your heart. I will gladly continue to include any posts you may submit for the Carnival of Ohio Politics.
Paul A. Miller
According to reports, about 20 local officials, party leaders and other politically active men and women in Northwest Ohio were involved in Noe's scheme to funnel something like $50,000 into the Bush campaign in '04. A handful of those "conduits" have not been named, and I have gotten some strong hints as to who those folks are. The allegations are serious enough that I don't plan to release those names until I've gotten something very solid - but I am in pursuit.
It's a shame people felt either pressured by Noe or caught up in the "glamour" of being major contributors to the Bush campaign. Bush certainly didn't need funds so badly that illegal avenues were "the only way." What's more, several of the "conduits" are wealthy political patrons who simply shifted their own inevitable $2,000 donation to other races. These kinds of shenanigans give a black eye to the hardworking volunteers, campaign workers and donors who follow the law. They also tarnish the good name of the candidate who almost never even knows about the illegal scheming which has gone on.
I don't particularly care for our campaign finance laws. Political speech should be close to inviolate, yet we are tying it down in red tape more and more each cycle. Nevertheless, the law of the land stands, and should be followed by all until it is corrected.