I have looked a bit more deeply into the Governor Rick Perry indictment. Unfortunately, the new information I have uncovered does not quiet my concerns that the indictment was improper. Quite the contrary.
The basis of the indictment is that Government Perry threatened to veto an appropriation passed by the Texas legislature for a public corruption unit on the ground that the head of the unit had committed a crime. Perry wanted the head of the unit to resign before he would approve the appropriation.
The indictment of Governor Rick Perry seems, at first glance, to be a political lawsuit without a substantial legal basis. The lawsuits stems from the Governor’s threatening to veto and then vetoing funds to a public corruption unit based on the head of the unit having committed the crime of driving while intoxicated.
According to news reports and the prosecutor’s statement, there are two charges in the indictment: “Grand jurors in Travis County charged Mr. Perry with abusing his official capacity and coercing a public servant, according to Michael McCrum, the special prosecutor assigned to the case.” The first claim is that Governor Perry improperly vetoed the funds passed by the Texas legislature. The idea seems to be that it was improper for the government to veto funds based on the head of a unit having committed a crime. The second claim is that he attempted to coerce the head of the public corruption unit to step down after her arrest for drunk driving by threatening to veto the funds unless she resigned.
John McCain has pronounced on the Paul-Perry-Paul war of foreign-policy op-eds that are available here, here, and here, so let us review the bidding. To believe there are things that exceed U.S. control is to accede to an “absence of American leadership” to which all global ills are traceable. To believe other things, controllable or not, fall outside of U.S. interests is to advocate “a withdrawal to a fortress America” such as preceded World War I. Say what one will about Senator McCain, he knows how to spice up a Sunday show with stark simplicities.