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January 04, 2009 09:39 PM UTC

Bill Richardson forced to back out

  • by: Another skeptic

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

President-elect Obama is giving N.M. Gov. Bill Richardson the “Rev. Weaver push.”

Richardson announced that he has withdrawn his name for secretary of commerce because of an investigation into a company that has done business with N.M., according to the AP.…

This just confirms my long-held opinion of Richardson’s ethics and competence.

He was one of Obama’s weakest appointments, and the president-elect probably is glad to be rid of him.

Indeed, Obama is famous for dropping aides and friends who make him look bad, and it’s pretty clear that Richardson has been pushed out.


14 thoughts on “Bill Richardson forced to back out

  1. This is a federal investigation that will almost certainly get people close to Richardson, if not Richardson himself. Confirmation would have been bloody and the outcome uncertain.

    But lets all remember, innocent until proven guilty.

    1. The NY Times raises uncomfortable questions:


      WASHINGTON – An upstate New York developer donated $100,000 to former President Bill Clinton’s foundation in November 2004, around the same time that Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton helped secure millions of dollars in federal assistance for the businessman’s mall project.

      Enlarge This Image

      John Berry/The Post-Standard

      Robert J. Congel donated $100,000 to the Clinton Foundation as Hillary Rodham Clinton pushed bills to help his mall project.

      Mrs. Clinton helped enact legislation allowing the developer, Robert J. Congel, to use tax-exempt bonds to help finance the construction of the Destiny USA entertainment and shopping complex, an expansion of the Carousel Center in Syracuse.

      Mrs. Clinton also helped secure a provision in a highway bill that set aside $5 million for Destiny USA roadway construction.

      Nothing to stop a happy beneficiary from making a contribution to a politician who helped him. But it stinks.

    1. particularly when the thing he’s taken the most heat for in the last year and half or so was not anything he did, but his refusal to demonize his associates that might look bad.  See Rev. Wright, for example.  Or the hilarious “denounce and reject” exchange regarding Farrakhan.  The list goes on.  Time and again, people have been trying to make political hay out of Barack Obama’s attitude of respect for people even when they look bad.  That reality is about 180 degrees from AS’s comment.

    2. I should have known better than to take Another Skeptic at his word in summarizing an article.

      Obama said he has accepted Richardson’s withdrawal, first reported by NBC News, “with deep regret.”

      “Governor Richardson is an outstanding public servant and would have brought to the job of Commerce Secretary and our economic team great insights accumulated through an extraordinary career in federal and state office,” Obama said in a statement.

      Yeah, what a brutal way of throwing the guy under the bus, huh?

  2. I guess there may be something there, but until there is more proof of it, I give Richardson the benefit of the doubt. Countless businesses/organizations get state funds. Many of those places or individuals involved with them make political contributions. As such, there would be tons of contracts or funds given to people who made contributions to the politicians in power. That doesn’t mean there was pay to play. Unless you pass something like Amendment 54 from this year that bans contributions from people who get contracts, there will always be the impression of impropriety.

  3. Might say I’m enchanted with it.

    If one raises the Guv’s name one hears stories. There has always been a lot of smoke around Richardson. That said, most New Mexicans that I have spoken with, and I visit once or twice annually, think he does a good job governing a poor state. He does seem to understand folks needs.

    New Mexico is a state with a lot of corruption, a lot of favoritism.

    1. All the New Mexicans I know were hopeful that he was a shoe-in to leave the state.  Now the dear green-chile-lovers will have to put up with him a little longer.

      And there’s no way he goes down to this, or anything, for that matter.  He walks.

      I was at a graduation for UNM a few years back, and he gave the keynote.  He made a fairly good self-deprecating joke about how most of the graduates only knew him as “the governor who drives to fast.”  I disagree with him on a lot of issues, but that’s a good line.  Then he followed it up with an ad lib about how sometimes things are just important, and he’s got important things to do for the state, and (trail off when he realizes he’s bombing).  

      To me, that was a sign that this was a man who had forgotten both humility, and how to be a politician.  

  4. Maybe Obama can pick a really good guy for the job… what am I thinking!

    Barack wouldn’t do that, he’d just pick someone that wants to distribute the wealth! Of course how could I forget that one good will get the job.

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