Former Speaker Of Pa. House Pleads Guilty

HARRISBURG, Pa., Sept. 1 (UPI) — The former speaker of the Pennsylvania House pleaded guilty Wednesday to using state money for political expenses.

John M. Perzel, who represented a district in Northeast Philadelphia for many years, appeared before a state judge in Harrisburg, the state capital, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported. He acknowledged his role in a scandal dubbed “Computergate,” in which prosecutors charge $10 million in taxpayer money was used for a computer program to help Republicans win elections.

Perzel, who could receive a sentence of 18 months or as much as 24 years, said nothing to reporters and little during the hearing. He released a statement apologizing to his former constituents and to Pennsylvania citizens.

“You had a right to expect better from me, and I am sorry that I let you down,” he said.

Perzel has agreed to cooperate with prosecutors. His former chief of staff and a former Republican representative still face charges, while his brother-in-law pleaded guilty last month and his nephew on Wednesday.

Perzel, a Republican, served as speaker from 2003 to 2007. He lost his seat to a Democrat in 2010, a year after he was charged.

“He was one of the most powerful speakers in modern Pennsylvania history,” G. Terry Madonna, head of a polling institute at Franklin and Marshall College, said. “Under his leadership, the Republican caucus perfected a political arm that extensively recruited candidates, organized fund-raisers for them, and provided them with policy platforms. Under him, it reached its zenith.”

Family Tradition

The revelation earlier this week that Onyango Obama — likely the same “Uncle Omar” mentioned in President Barack Obama’s oddly premature memoir, Dreams from My Father — was arrested for DUI was just another chapter in Dreams, entitled: “Presidential relatives who were dumber than boxes of hair.”

After all, it’s not as if “Uncle Omar” is the first member of a Presidential bloodline who no doubt forced the President to wince in embarrassment. In fact, Onyango Obama isn’t even the first Presidential relative whose wince-worthy actions stemmed from an inability to hold their sauce. Consider Jenna and Barbara Bush, Ron Reagan (who may simply suffer from garden-variety-liberal stupidity, as opposed to three-sheets-to-the-wind stupidity) and Billy “Beer and Libyans” Carter. In fact, Onyango Obama’s latest brush with Johnny Law is strictly bush-league when compared to Roger “You mean he’s the brother of the President of the United States?” Clinton.

It would be bad enough if “Uncle Omar” were simply another pinhead who thinks getting pickled and then sliding behind the wheel is big-time fun. However, when Framingham, Massachusetts’ finest stopped him the other day, the fun was just starting.

Despite having a nephew in high places, Onyango Obama isn’t on the guest list for the next state dinner. In fact, Onyango Obama isn’t on the guest list for the United States of America. “Uncle Omar” is an illegal alien with an outstanding deportation order. Unbeknownst to the President (of course), when Onyango Obama blew a “blotto” on the Framingham Police’s field sobriety test, he had in his possession a Social Security card and driver’s license. His blood alcohol level was .14. According to the arrest report, Onyango Obama announced that he would use his lone phone call to ring up his nephew: “I think I will call the White House.” Oh, what we wouldn’t give to listen in on that family reunion.

Much like the President’s infamous aunt, Zeituni Onyango, who ultimately evaded justice long enough to permanently affix herself to the taxpayers’ underbelly, Onyango Obama may well embody a real reason President Obama pursues his olly-olly-oxen-free immigration policy. Obama called Arizona’s efforts to stem the flood of illegals racist, even “reporting” Arizona to the United Nations. He and his corporate media mouthpieces suggested taxpayers who want a return to secure borders and decent immigration standards are racist. Though Democrats call anyone racist who disagrees with them on virtually anything at this point, slandering opponents of amnesty with the spurious charge of racism has become as vital to Obama’s method of governance as high unemployment, crushing debt and undervalued currency — or perhaps, those last three are not on purpose. And as we learned recently, the President has introduced a new policy halting deportations of people facing… deportation.

I used to believe Obama opposed sound immigration policy because he’s a liberal. I assumed his goals were the same as the goals of nearly every Democrat who ever blurted out an idiotic remark such as: “We are all immigrants.” (That’s technically true, but it applies to everyone outside the Olduvai Gorge; and I’m certain we can’t all fit there now.) Democrats like illegal aliens because illegal aliens are indispensable to Democrats. They can carry heavy stuff, thereby eliminating the chance that Representative Nancy Pelosi will chip a nail. They can trim the hedges at Al Gore’s mansions with a true horticulturalist’s flair, for far less than minimum wage. A number of them work in the drug trade, making it much easier for Hollywood blowhards to get their next fix: They can go “talk to the gardener.” And some of them — like Uncle Omar — availed themselves of forged documentation, so they can help ACORN (or whatever that prestigious bunch call themselves these days) with the electoral “community organizing.” In the wake of “Uncle Omar’s” drunken swerve into the long arm of the law, I believe it’s fair to wonder whether there might be a familial reason behind Obama’s dereliction on immigration.

Hey, we all have a relative we pretend isn’t hanging off the lower branches of the family tree. Some of us are the relatives in question (which might explain why my brother doesn’t let me baby-sit his kids; mix up the scotch with the formula — one time). But few of us considered allowing an entire criminal class to move in next door just to keep the family disgrace off a one-way flight back to some dirt farm in East Africa. Perhaps it is just a family affair.

–Ben Crystal

Protester Allowed To Sue Airport Screeners

RICHMOND, Va. — A Virginia college student who stripped to a pair of running shorts to protest intrusive search procedures will be allowed to sue two airport screeners.

A Federal judge in Richmond, Va., ruled Tuesday that the portion of Aaron Tobey’s lawsuit dealing with free speech rights can go forward, The Christian Science Monitor reported.

Tobey was arrested at Richmond International Airport in December 2010 after stripping down to reveal a portion of the 4th Amendment written in black marker on his chest.

It read: “The right of the people to be secure … against unreasonable searches and seizures shall not be violated.”

The ruling by U.S. District Judge Henry Hudson opens the way for further investigation by Tobey’s lawyers into why security screeners called the police when Tobey removed most of his clothing.

The lawsuit charges security officials had Tobey arrested in response to his protest and not because he failed to follow instructions.

His attorneys say he has a right to peacefully object to the government’s treatment of airline passengers provided his actions are not disruptive.