Gov. Rick Perry is clearly not guilty of the charges in his indictment. I sure am, though. Anybody want to indict me?
Perry, of course, was indicted for vetoing funding of the Travis County District Attorney’s Public Drunkenness/Integrity Unit after the unit’s chief public drunk proved herself to have none of the integrity she is charged with upholding. When she’s sober, D.A. Rosemary Lehmberg fires assistants who refuse to lie to internal affairs investigators and persists in unethical vendettas against Republicans such as Tom DeLay long after they’ve been exonerated. When she’s drunk, she drives all over the road and then berates and threatens the officers who arrest her.
“Y’all are gonna be in jail, not me,” she said at one point during her infamous booking video. You might say that’s just the sort of thing lawmakers had in mind when they made it a felony for anyone who “by means of coercion… influences or attempts to influence a public servant in a specific exercise of his official power…” A Travis County grand jury decided it wasn’t. Now comes another Travis County grand jury to say that criminal coercion is when a governor vetoes the funding for this dissolute public integrity unit after suggesting its head really ought to resign.