Taft Punk

Chevy Chases Ugly Brother MaybeApparently, there's more going on in Ohio besides fixed elections. We read today about Governor Bob Taft, who this morning pleaded "no contest" to four misdemeanor counts involving breaking the state's ethics laws. He failed to report gifts, most of which were rounds of golf. Reading up on the case, we saw a familiar name among the golf partners: John Snow, a.k.a. The Secretary of the Treasury. That's right: Taft is a Republican. We asked Fred Becker what gives.

Dear Wonkleupagus,


I am sorry you didn't get that Reliable Source position. However, I'm always in need of a ready laugh and take comfort in still being able to make people chuckle by saying: "If the Post Style section were alive today..."

Anyway: Bob Taft. He always seemed like a Chevy Chase character playing a governor to me, but that's not why I write. He's in a pickle and he sure could use a hand from someone like George Bush. The party could use the help, too, what with Taft being living proof that Republicans don't play by the rules. Neither do the Dems, but they didn't get caught this time. Or the last. Have I mentioned Jack Ambramoff?

Look, Bush knows how to support a guy when he's down. Look what he did for Raphael Palmero. The President, who was once tough on steroid use in baseball, waved the hand of absolution over the Orioles slugger. Palmero played for the Texas Rangers when Bush owned part of the team. Though Bush was never really in a position to assess his character, Palmero's talent on the field gave Bush the opportunity to use his special "heart vision" and declare it "good." This blessing is irrevocable. (See Rove, Cheney, Rummy.)

So Taft could use some of that blind love now. Maybe Bush doesn't know Taft's heart. Though the President had to spend dozens of days in the crucial swing state of Ohio, he never really took to the Guv. Bob spent a lot of time complaining in the cabin of Air Force One about unemployment and high Medicaide costs. That he couldn't help provide a more comfortable victory margin for Bush in Ohio didn't' help either. So will Bush come out and make some extraordinary blanket statement of absolution? He's more likely to cross the road to bring Cindy Sheehan sunrise canapés.


Until another indictment,

I remain your faithful servant,


Ohio governor pleads no contest to ethics charges [AP/USAT]


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