Posts Tagged ‘Rosemary Lehmberg’

Rick Perry Cleared of Phony Travis County Charges

Wednesday, February 24th, 2016

Travis County’s politicized District Attorney’s office loses yet again:

Texas’ highest criminal court on Wednesday dismissed the remaining felony charge against former Gov. Rick Perry in the abuse-of-power case that he blamed for his early exit from the Republican presidential race.

The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals tossed a charge of misuse of office that stemmed from Perry’s 2013 effort to force out the Travis County district attorney. And it upheld the decision of a lower court to dismiss a charge of coercion of a public official.

The 6-2 decision appears to mark the end of Perry’s 18-month legal saga — one that outlasted the end of his record-setting, 14-year tenure as governor and his short-lived second bid for the White House.


“The case centered on Perry’s threat in 2013 to veto $7.5 million budgeted for the Travis County district attorney’s office if District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg, a Democrat, didn’t resign after her drunken-driving arrest.”

The only corruption in this case was not Rick Perry using his constitutionally authorized veto power, but the Travis County DA’s nakedly partisan witch-hunt on behalf of a Democratic Party furious at how Perry consistently kicked their asses…

Public Integrity Unit Oversight Removed From Travis County

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2015

Democrats won’t be able to launch partisan witch hunts against statewide Republican officeholders from the Travis County Prosecutor’s Office anymore, as Governor Greg Abbott has signed the bill stripping oversight of the statewide Public Integrity Unit from the Travis County prosecutor’s office

“Under House Bill 1690, the Public Integrity Unit would be shifted from Travis County to the Texas Rangers – part of the Department of Public Safety – which would take charge of investigating alleged corruption among public officials. District attorneys from the home county of the accused would prosecute the cases.”

Travis County Democrats in general, and District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg in particular, have only themselves to blame. Both Lehmberg and equally partisan predecessor Ronnie Earle have pursued vindictive and flat-out-fraudulent cases against Republican officeholders, from Rep. Tom Delay (accused of violating a law that hadn’t been enacted at the time, and whose conviction was overturned and converted into an outright acquittal) to Kay Bailey Hutchison.

But it was Rosemary Lehmberg’s actions that pretty much sealed the fate of the Public Integrity Unit. The video of following her DUI arrest (when she decided that rolling around Austin with an open bottle of vodka in the car and a blood alcohol level of .239 would just be a swell idea) lead to Governor Rick Perry demand for her to resign. When she refused, Perry carried through with his threat to veto funding for the Public Integrity Unit, at which point the Travis County prosecutor’s office indicted Perry for using his constitutionally enumerated veto powers.

If it hadn’t been for Lehmberg’s poor judgment and criminal activity, and and the grossly partisan overreach of herself and Earle, the legislature would never have felt compelled to act.

Given the sterling reputation of the Texas Rangers, the unit is now in far better hands, and the move to their oversight takes effects September 1.

Texas House Votes To Defang Runaway Travis County Public Integrity Unit

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2015

More good news from the Texas legislature: The Texas House has voted to remove jurisdiction over statewide elected and appointed officials from Travis County’s corrupt, partisan Public Integrity Unit. Instead, such investigations would be handled by the unimpeachable Texas Rangers rather than the likes of Ronnie Earl and Rosemary Lehmberg.

It was only a historical fluke that Travis County managed to exercise such authority in the first place, and given the Public Integrity Unit’s willingness to pursue abusive vendettas against Republican political figures such as Tom DeLay and Rick Perry, removing that responsibility was long overdue.

Democrats will no longer be able to get revenge against Republicans from the Travis County prosecutor’s office for what Republicans and voters have done to them at the ballot box over the last two decades…

Sometimes I Amuse Myself

Thursday, August 21st, 2014

Some more Low Calorie Content Substitute:

Perry Indictment Slammed as Ridiculous On Both Left and Right

Monday, August 18th, 2014

More and more commentators, on all sides of the political spectrum, have weighed in on the risible nature of the Rick Perry indictment:

  • Respectable lefty attorney Alan Derschowitz (who has maintained an admirably consistent commitment to civil liberties throughout his career) condemns the Perry indictment: “Everybody, liberal or conservative, should stand against this indictment.”
  • Patterico provides extensive legal analysis and notes: “Words truly fail to describe what an outrageous and unsupportable abuse of prosecutorial power this is.”
  • “’You can’t pay me enough to vote for Rick Perry, but this indictment is a totally corrupt use of criminal law,’ said David Berg, a Houston attorney and contributor to Democratic candidates. ‘It is clearly political, vindictive and unsupportable.’”
  • Sarah Palin notes that frivolous lawsuits to derail a Republican’s national electoral chances are now standard operating procedure for Democrats.
  • Lefty journalist Jonathan Chait says:

    They say a prosecutor could get a grand jury to indict a ham sandwich, and this always seemed like hyperbole, until Friday night a Texas grand jury announced an indictment of governor Rick Perry…The theory behind the indictment is flexible enough that almost any kind of political conflict could be defined as a “misuse” of power or “coercion” of one’s opponents. To describe the indictment as “frivolous” gives it far more credence than it deserves.

  • Even MSNBC says that “it’s hard to imagine sending a governor to jail for talking about why he issued a veto.”
  • In other news, check out the #IStumbleWithRosemaryLehmberg tag…

    Rick Perry Indicted for Acting Like a Governor

    Saturday, August 16th, 2014

    Friday Rick Perry was indicted for using his constitutionally enumerated veto powers, namely carrying through on his threat to veto $7.5 million funding for the Travis County Public Integrity Unit last year unless Democratic District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg resigned over her DWI.

    To call it weak sauce is to give the false impression that there’s any sauce there whatsoever. This is pure political hackery by a Democratic prosecutor looking to “get Perry,” since Democrats have been completely unable to do so at the ballot box. As Powerline notes:

    The Travis County district attorney’s office has long been a cesspool of corruption. It was that office, controlled by the Democratic Party machine, that infamously indicted Tom DeLay for nothing. It took years before DeLay could finally clear his name, and his career was ruined.

    Conservatives should respond to this indictment by rallying around Perry. The indictment is a bad joke, intended simply to generate negative publicity. As with the bogus DeLay indictment from the same source, years may go by before it is finally proved baseless. In the meantime, conservatives should stand behind Perry and denounce the politically-motivated machinations of Texas Democrats.

    Eugene Volokh notes that in a previous case (Wurtz vs. Risley) the court ruled that “Coercion of a lawful act by a threat of lawful action is protected free expression.”

    Even Think Progress think the Perry indictment is weak. Another sign of that weakness is the fact they released the indictment late Friday, the traditional “bury the story” dumping ground.

    I suspect Rick Perry will come out of this just fine. The real loser will be Lehmberg, when a whole new national audience gets to see her drunkenly scream “Call Greg!” all over again…

    Stop Me If You’ve Heard This One Before

    Tuesday, August 13th, 2013

    “Travis County prosecutor charged with DWI.”

    A prosecutor with the Travis County District Attorney’s Office was charged with driving while intoxicated after being involved in a traffic wreck over the weekend.

    According to an arrest warrant affidavit released Monday, Brandon Grunewald, 33, was in a collision Sunday afternoon on the southbound MoPac Boulevard service road near Barton Skyway, Grunewald was driving a 2008 Land Rover. The other driver was in a Mini Cooper.

    And what did his boss have to say?

    Grunewald’s boss, Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg said she is reviewing his case

    “It’s a first offense DWI and I don’t know what will happen until I have all the facts,” explained Lehmberg. “I have never terminated an employee for a first offense DWI and we have had employees with first offense DWI up and down the ranks.”


    You know, I don’t think I’ve worked anywhere where “people up and down the chain of command” had “first-time” DWIs.

    Sadly, Mr. Grunewald was not reported to have stamped his feet and implored the police to “Call Greg!”

    (Hat tip: Blue Dot Blues.)

    Lawsuit Against Rosemary Lehmberg Moves Foward, Jury Trial Schedule for July 22

    Thursday, June 13th, 2013

    That’s what I’m gleaning from this Statesman article on Travis County DA Rosemary Lehmberg following her DWI, though it doesn’t say the July 22 trial is for her removal under state law for intoxication of public officials. (The trial is not for her DWI, for which she already plead guilty and served time.) Unfortunately, the piece by Ciara O’Rourke is hardly a model of journalistic clarity:

    Judge clears way for suit to remove Lehmberg

    Visiting Judge David Peeples made several rulings Tuesday in a lawsuit to remove Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg from office, including allowing another removal petition filed recently by a former district attorney candidate to proceed.

    Rick Reed, who ran against Lehmberg in 2008, filed a petition two weeks ago that claims 16 counts of official misconduct ranging from coercion of a public servant to retaliation.

    That and a separate petition to remove her from office on grounds of intoxication were filed under a state law that allows the removal of a district attorney on grounds of incompetency, official misconduct and intoxication on or off duty.

    Lehmberg pleaded guilty to driving while intoxicated April 19, a week after Travis County sheriff’s deputies arrested her following a 911 call about a car driving for about a mile in a bike lane, swerving and veering into oncoming traffic, according to an arrest affidavit. A blood sample showed her blood alcohol level was nearly three times the legal limit.

    Reed cites Lehmberg’s behavior as she was being booked in jail, including asking for Sheriff Greg Hamilton several times, as examples of her alleged misconduct.

    A jury trial is scheduled for July 22, though the Travis County attorney’s office, which is representing the state, could decline to pursue the suit on either ground.

    Executive Assistant County Attorney James Collins said the county attorney’s office is at this point preparing for trial on July 22, though he told Peeples that prosecutors haven’t finished reviewing Reed’s petition.

    A second hearing before the trial date was scheduled for June 21, when Collins told Peeples prosecutors expect to request to test a hair sample from Lehmberg and to further test the blood sample taken after her arrest.

    I’m assuming the trail is for “a separate petition to remove her from office on grounds of intoxication were filed under a state law that allows the removal of a district attorney on grounds of incompetency, official misconduct and intoxication on or off duty,” but the piece is so poorly written it’s hard to tell.

    The Fox 7 report is considerably clearer: “A petition filed by County Attorney David Escamilla calls for her removal on grounds of intoxication saying Lehmberg violated Texas Government Code. Lehmberg did not appear in court Tuesday when a judge decided there will be a jury trial.”

    In other news, as Dwight already reported, Governor Rick Perry is threatening to veto all state funding for the Travis County Public Integrity Unit, which Lehmberg heads as Travis County DA, unless she resigns.

    But there is one good spot of news for Lehmberg: She’s no longer a suspect in a hit-and-run that happened the night of her drinking-and-driving binge.

    Previous coverage here.

    LinkSwarm for May 10, 2013

    Friday, May 10th, 2013

    For a shocking change of pace, the Friday LinkSwarm will be on Friday:

  • “How can we ‘gun people’ honestly be expected to come to the table with anti-gunners when anti-gunners are willfully stupid about guns, and openly hate, despise and ridicule those of us who own them?” Read the whole thing.
  • Sheila Jackson Lee wants a National Gun Registry.
  • The lovely qualities of Jihadi Facebook pages: “The further I crawled down the extremist rabbit hole and the more caved-in skulls and headless corpses I saw.”
  • Union politics helped create the Baltimore Booty House.
  • “The Euro cannot be destroyed by any craft that we here possess. It was made in the fires of Frankfurt. Only there can it be unmade.” What does it say when Sauron wants the ring, er, Euro destroyed as well? Though once again: Austerity hasn’t failed in Europe, it hasn’t been tried.
  • “It was one thing to do amnesty during the white hot Reagan economy of the mid to late 80s. It’s quite another to do it in the midst of the Obama depression.”
  • Harry Reid unwilling to bargain in raising the debt ceiling? I say fine and dandy. Just cut government spending across the board until the budget is balanced.
  • “Detroit in worse shape than previously thought.” I don’t see how that statement can be true for any story that doesn’t include the word “cannibalism.”
  • London mayor Boris Johnson thinks it would be a good thing for democracy if the UK were to just walk away from the EU.
  • Travis County Democratic District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg is out of the clink after serving half a 45 day sentence for DWI. A jury will evidently determine “whether her drunken driving was habitual or whether the recent arrest was the result of a one-time event.” Because lots of people without alcohol problems suddenly decide “Hey, I’m going to go cruising around town with an open bottle of vodka and a blood alcohol level of .239! That sounds like a great idea!” I might believe that…if Lehmberg was 21.
  • Ted Cruz 1, Obama 0:
  • Rosemary Lehmberg: Seen at The Gun Show

    Sunday, April 28th, 2013

    Hat tip: Dwight, who brings us news that Lehmberg “won’t be seeking reelection.” Well, duh. People who have been removed from office don’t run for reelection…