Breaking News: Clarence Norman convicted on all 4 counts
People have heard me complain about corruption in the Democratic Party in Brooklyn. I was particularly angry when all the reform candidates seemed to go down in flames in this last primary election while corruption and do-nothing politics won big. Well, things are looking better than I had thought.
Clarence Norman, the head of the Brooklyn Democratic machine and also the leader of corrupt Brooklyn politics, has been convicted on all four counts today. This is a blow for reform and against corruption in the Democratic party. The following is quoted in its entirety from the NY1 website:
Brooklyn Democratic Party leader Clarence Norman was found guilty Tuesday of mishandling campaign contributions.
The state assemblyman has been convicted on two felony counts of violating election law by taking excessive campaign donations, and two counts of falsifying business records.
The jury agreed with prosecutors that Norman tried to conceal $10,000 worth of contributions in the 2000 and 2002 Assembly primary elections. Norman's lawyers had maintained it was all an honest mistake.
Norman now could face up to four years in prison.
The felony convictions will also cost Norman his Assembly seat, and control of the Brooklyn Democratic organization.
There is no word yet on whether Norman plans to appeal the verdict.
(I would have edited the article, but it is an example of really good journalism. It is short and to the point with no extraneous info. So, to hopefully make up for any copyright violations, I want to plug NY1 as one of the better, less biased news sources around.)
This is big! Clarence Norman had been dominating Brooklyn including the judiciary. I had doubted that he ever would be brought to justice. But, barring appeals, Norman has been caught, indicted and convicted.
On another note on Brooklyn reform politics, one of those reform candidates who I thought had been defeated by the machine has been elected in a recount. Margharita Lopez-Torres has squeaked by in a recount to become the next Surrogate judge for Brooklyn, a position that has been a mainstay of the corrupt machine. There are still appeals pending there, too. But things are looking better than they had right after primary day when it seemed that corruption had won the day.
I want to emphasize that although the indictment and conviction of Clarence Norman is thanks to the almost equally corrupt Brooklyn DA, Charles Hynes, the election of Margharita Lopez-Torres is due entirely to the hard work of many progressives who fought hard to get her name on the ballot and to get her elected. I may still feel that the progressives didn't try hard enough for Norm Siegel, and they dropped the ball COMPLETELY with Paul Wooten, but they did good hustling for Lopez-Torres.