Bob McDonnell must resign his post as governor of Virginia amid new evidence of his guilt

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    Cross-posted from that paragon of journalism and reporting Richmond Progressive Examiner.

    Virginia’s blue-eyed, unmanned aerial drone loving governor, Bob McDonnell, lost any justification for remaining in office after the most recent revelation that he knew about financial assistance and gifts provided by Jonnie R. Williams Sr., Star Scientifics’ CEO. Prior to this ‘discovery’, McDonnell’s defense lawyers argued to federal prosecutors that Virginia’s staggering governor had been “kept in the dark” about the gifts given to his family by Williams.

    Now, however, Bob McDonnell has no room to defend himself on the grounds of ignorance regarding the gifts his family received from Star Scientifics’ CEO. The Washington Post gives one example: “McDonnell (R) was present at a charity auction in 2011 when the chief executive of Star Scientific, which makes a dietary supplement, successfully bid on a fashion tour of New York for the governor’s wife in front of a crowd of onlookers, witnesses said.”

    With McDonnell’s most clever defense now in the gutter, it’s difficult to imagine how the governor can reason his way into staying on as Virginia’s chief executive. Not only would McDonnell’s resignation spare the people of Virginia any further embarrassment, it may also spare Bob McDonnell from some of the public scrutiny that will surely befall him if he remains Virginia’s governor.  

    In other words, if McDonnell steps down as governor, he may take some of the spotlight away from the embarrassing details of his relationship with Jonnie Williams Sr.

    Up till this point, the majority of both major political parties in Virginia have been cautious about calling for McDonnell’s resignation. There is, however, no further justification for not calling on McDonnell to resign. It is as clear now as it has ever been that Bob McDonnell took financial contributions and gifts in return for political favors (i.e., McDonnell broke the law and the integrity of his office).

    So much for the positive legacy of Bob McDonnell.  

    • HarperJ

      If McDonnell has any functioning brain cells, he won’t resign.

      Ethically, sure, he should resign.  But if McDonnell has proven anything, it’s that ethics mean very little to him.  Taking that into account, there is no logical rationale for his resignation and some powerful motivation for him to remain in office.

      The primary reason is that there’s no guarantee he’ll be prosecuted.  Virginia’s gift laws are particularly lax, neither the feds nor the state may have a good case against him.

      If he leaves, it is an admission of guilt,  his reputation is ruined.  If he stays and is not prosecuted, he may eventually be able to rehabilitate his image.

      There there’s the governor’s soap box.  It allows him to publicly fight the allegations against him.  Were he to leave, he’d immediately lose that.

      And so long as he’s under federal investigation, his office is his largest bargaining chip.  If as has been rumored, he’s been offered a deal with no jail time in exchange for his resignation, he should take it.  Absent that, his lawyers must be strongly recommending he stay in office.

      Unless and until he’s indicted or pleas out, his resignation is a pipe dream, and not a beneficial wish for liberal Virginians.

      For most readers of this blog, having a corrupt Republican Governor in place can only help the prospects for a Democratic gubernatorial replacement.