Thursday, February 14, 2008

Will Star Investigate Serious Allegations About Andre Carson?

The Star's Mary Beth Schneider took up a Democratic spoon-fed nonissue in the 7th District congressional race and attempted to make into a big deal to harm State Rep. Jon Elrod's campaign for Congress. You know who stood up in the balcony and videotaped Elrod signing campaign letters on campaign-paid stationery, folding them up, licking them himself and placing them in campaign-paid envelopes. As someone who has spent a lot of time working around legislatures in the past, I can assure you it is a common practice for the part-time lawmakers to tend to other matters while they are over at the State House. Insurance agents work on selling insurance in between meetings. Attorneys work at their desk on client matters. Business owners tend to matters pertaining to the businesses back in their districts by telephones. And yes, legislators tend to campaign matters. Everyone at the State House knows this happens, but until today, nobody made a big deal out of it. Yet, Mary Beth Schneider, who has always written stories to help out the Carson political machine, tries to do a hit job on Elrod today.

If she were really doing her job, she would have walked across the street and picked up a copy of Andre Carson's personnel file from the Indiana State Excise Police. There's plenty in there worth mulling over. Carson had no formal education beyond maybe a high school diploma when his grandmother, the late Rep. Julia Carson (D), pulled strings to get him and his cousin, Sam Carson, a job working as state excise police officers, passing up more qualified candidates for the jobs. Prior to becoming excise police officers, the two had patronage jobs working for their grandmother in the Center Township Trustee's office doing little more than earning a paycheck at your expense. Carson finished 88th out of 89 in his class at the Indiana Law Enforcement Academy. Yet, while working this full time job, Carson somehow managed to earn a bachelor's degree from Concordia University in a faraway place called Mequon, Wisconsin. He started classes in the Spring of 2001 and had his degree in hand by the Summer of 2003. That's no small task when you're supposedly being paid to work full time for the state. By 2006, Carson had also earned a master's degree from Indiana Wesleyan University.

As I learned from Supt. Alex Huskey of the Indiana State Excise Police, much of Carson's personnel file has been missing since a grand jury led by former Prosecutor Scott Newman seized his file. The investigation was prompted, in part, over allegations Carson's former boss, Gene Honeycutt, had been showing political favoritism in the office. That investigation resulted in Honeycutt pleading guilty to charges he accepted favors in the form of free food, alcohol and the services of strippers at two Indianapolis area strip clubs. Another excise employee, Jack Dugan, was charged with ghost employment. Advance Indiana has learned from sources that Honeycutt is not the least bit pleased with how events turned out for him and believes the Carson political machine bears blame for his downfall. Both Honeycutt and Dugan lost their jobs. The Carson boys got to keep their jobs. Former Prosecutor Scott Newman always had a soft place in his heart for the Center Township gang because they supposedly helped him defeat former Prosecutor Jeff Modisett. There's much more to be told about this sordid mess, but the local news media won't cover it. They won't cover it because it will be extremely damaging to Andre Carson's political aspirations. Yet, Schneider will take something she knows that most lawmakers over at the State House do every day and try to use it to destroy the political chances of a decent elected official like Jon Elrod.

We're sick and tired of the local news media in this town acting as the enabler for the Carson political machine and allowing them to get by with all sorts of unethical and corrupt practices while holding our respected elected officials to a much higher standard. “Democrats are going to pull out every trick in the book,” State GOP Chairman Murray Clark told Schneider. “I’m going to call Jon and make sure he pulls his shades at night.” Well, Ms. "I'll do anything I can to help elect another do-nothing Carson to political office" Schneider, we don't intend to let you get by with it again and stick us with a representative in Congress who is completely and utterly unqualified to hold the office.


Anonymous said...

Gary, Andre Carson was a ghost employee and Scott Newman knew it. He was too afraid of going up against the Carson folks so he took the easy way out and indicted the two white guys.

Anonymous said...

I taught one class for Concordia Wisconsin several years ago at their office/classroom space in Carmel. They are legitimate and properly accredited. And academically substandard. My class used several chapters from an out-of-date western civilization textbook (I had no control over content: the syllabus was written for me by someone else, and I could not modify it); this textbook was used for (if memory serves) six classes -- in other words, students were awarded 18 credit hours for covering the content that anywhere else would earn six. Interestingly, classes taken in the adult program in Indianapolis would NOT transfer to the traditional program at Mequon. Classes meet for (in theory) four hours a night for four nights: my experience was that when I stopped after three hours, I was the last one in the building. Very few teachers had doctorates; an alarming number were ministers without a graduate degree in the field they were teaching.

Anonymous said...

The surreptitious taping part bothers me. It doesn't bother the
mainstream media because they
relish doing it and call that
"investigative" journalism.

Candidates for political office
need to better understand that
there are cameras everywhere.
Elrod needs to go to "Smart
Candidates' school" real fast.

Many local judges bar those
cellphones with cameras because people testifying most times fear retribution such as in a criminal

I observed a local republican county chairman trying to film the face of everyone present when Jill
Long Thompson was speaking to
announce her candidacy as it
reminded me of an old Soviet tactic.

Anonymous said...

AI, Jon Elrod himself said what he did was wrong. He admitted that his actions showed "really poor judgment."

We know that you strongly support Mr. Elrod but when the candidate himself admits that he exercised "poor judgment" then we have to ask what kind of judgment will he show when the ethical issues confronting him are much more complex?

At the same time, I will agree that Andre Carson is not without his warts.

For these reasons and many others, I will be looking forward to voting for David Orentlicher in May.

Anonymous said...

Why didn't Schneider inquire about the identity of the taxpayer-paid Democratic partisan employee who allowed this dirty tricks operative for the Carson campaign to roam freely in an area restricted to the general public to surrepticiously video tape Elrod for partisan political purposes?

Gary R. Welsh said...

Jon's error in judgment was allowing a staffer to carry the envelopes to the post office downstairs. The letters, envelopes and stamps were all paid by his campaign, not with taxpayer funds. Other lawmakers send staffers out to pick up their dry cleaning for God's sakes. The point is that Schneider has always done the dirty work of the Carson political machine. She lets the likes of Wilson Allen go out and do her work for her and then prints a story on whatever they bring her. If information is furnished to her like the information I discovered in Andre Carson's personnel file--investigative work she should have been doing on her own--she won't do anything with it. She has and will always do everything she can to cover up the corruption that is the Carson political machine.

Anonymous said...

There seems to be an "unspoken agreement" between the white business elite in Indianapolis and the so-called "leaders" in the Indianapolis black community.
The agreement being that the white elite power base gives the Congressional seat and the Marion County Trustee's office to the blacks in exchange for allowing the white business dominated Downtown Klan the keys to the city.
The Downtown Klan (now with Ballard in office) gets it's rake off special interest business and legal deals and the black leaders get their rake off patronage and other financially lucrative activites including the numbers racket in the inner city and MBE contract manipulations and various grants.
I do not believe for one minute that the Indianapolis Star's "expose" on Elrod didn't have the Downtown Klan's fingerprints all over it.
A deal is a deal and the local Republican party is living up to it's part of the bargain.
Some may call it conspiracy but I prefer the word corruption.
Money, politics and race = an unholy trinity.

Gary R. Welsh said...

Excellent point, anon 9:43. The House Democrats hands are not clean at all in this matter. I suspect there will be some repercussions behind closed doors about the House Democrats enabling a partisan political operative access to a restricted area to gain video footage for use in the Carson congressional campaign. Turnabout is fair play. This sort of action cuts both ways, and I suspect there are as many Democratic lawmakers upset about how this happened as there are Republican lawmakers.

Zappatista said...



Anonymous said...

AI, Democratic precinct committeeman here. Mary Beth Schneider was presented evidence that the Democratic Party and the Carson machine rigged the outcome of the January slating where Carson won on the first ballot. None of that information made its way into a Star news story. Why? Is the theft of a congressional seat not a serious matter for the Star readers to mull over?

indyernie said...

10:13 Please tell us more.

Anonymous said...

Anon 10:13 AM EST

Maybye you should present that evidence to AI. He seems to do a good job investigating a potential hot story !

Anonymous said...

Schneider is the same lazy reporter who took the 15-year-old Eric Dickerson police report, which Wilson Allen hand-delivered to her, and which resulted in "NO CONVICTION" and made it front page news. She should be paid by the Carson campaign committee instead of Gannett since she seems so determined to do their heavy lifting for them.

Anonymous said...

I really hope I get to hear Carson apologists criticizing Elrod for ethics. Talk about hypocrisy.

Anonymous said...

Maybe Rep.Burton acted like he was on steroids.Raging against McNamee.Burton showed everyone on ESPN why he should not be re-elected.

Anonymous said...

The Star really needs to interview Louis Farrakhan and to find out what instructions he has given Carson.

Farrakhan has refused to provide financial documents to a court in Northern Indiana, so he likely will not provide info on the cash being funneled into Carson's campaign by would be interesting.

M Theory said...

Gary, Sean Shepard is very qualified for Congress and deserves to go.

He won't be leaving another elected post to serve us either.

And we know from his past actions in service to the people that putting people first will never be a problem for Sean Shepard.

Gary, to you and all your readers. This is THE time to get a Libertarian into Congress. You want the tree shook and truly Advance Indiana? This is how to get it done. From Indiana we can lead the rest of the country in the political reform toward smaller and accountable government that must happen.

Anonymous said...

Bill Crawford, Billy Breaux, Tommy Brown, and maybe five other African American leaders do not speak for the majority of African American community. These leaders has taken our city hostage and have no plans on letting go power. Instead, to ensure that they receive their set a side moneys, they've selected Andre Carson to help them from not going to the nursing center. I am a democrat who happens to be African American, and I will vote Elrod in the special election. Rotika, has made a good point in making the election board follow federal elections law. To do paper ballad, and then take them to an undisclosed location where the Carson machine is waiting in ski mask to steal another election. We need change!

Anonymous said...

KUDOS to you for moderating and approving my comment above in support of Sean Shepard. I know you are a big Elrod supporter. I'm glad you are allowing my free speech on your blog. I've always respected you and this adds to my respect.

And for the record, I like what I see in Elrod. I think his political instincts are excellent and he is one of the first on the campaign trail to understand that the rules are quickly changing.

I just don't think he should be running this campaign during such an important session, with our state in a dire tax crisis. As a jr. state rep he should be paying close attention and networking all he can on our behalf.

Elrod could gain huge political clout if he would drop out of the race, citing to the people that he's interested first in our business at the state house and the people's business is more important than a campaign.

I am sure no one would ever forget that kind of bold move. Further, it would pay off down the road for him immeasureably as he runs for other offices. It might ultimately help land him the presidency one day, you never know.

I'm also sure it would make national news and he would be painted in a very good light and be talked about on every talk news show coast to coast. He'd be famous overnight.

While such an action would be breaking "the rules", Elrod is known for his grassroots concern, hardwork, and incredible instincts regarding the new political paradigm developing in America.

Anonymous said...

Unless you are a member of the media, it has been a standing practice that anyone wishing to film in the House or Senate chambers, other than authorized members of the media, must have advance approval granted to them. Who authorized this person to film in the House chamberss. That includes filming from the public gallery, Jen.

Anonymous said...

Melyssa, I don't understand your rational on this notion of having Elrod drop out of the race. How about, all congressional candidates dropping out of the entire race and give Carson a free ride to congress. How does that sound to you? Our leadership here in Indianapolis is very poor, we have poor elected officials, poor leaders who are only concern is to fattn their pockets, and leave poor people fighting and killing eachother. We need change, all of the political cronies need to feel what many of us poor people are experiencing daily:" Left out and forgotten". Carson is not the answer, if he doesn't want to listen to citizens, how can he be an advocate for change. He is bought and paid for, and just like Julia he can be easily manipulated.

Anonymous said...

Gary, your writing here contains nothing but baseless gossip and political character assassination. You usually dont stoop this low. If you have facts re: Carson then present some facts but not just some mindless babbling that contains no facts.

Anonymous said...

Mindless babbling?

Gary's post produced a former Concordia teacher who basically told us it was all a sham.

And Andre's personnel file should be available.

Anyone who earns a full bachelor's degree in two years, in Wisconsin, while working fulltime for the State, has, as Ricky used to tell Lucy: "some 'splainin to do."

And this was done while on our taxpayer-funded payroll.

Nothing gossipy about that. I kinda wish Mary Beth or Matt would get off their dead asses and do something about these kinds of stories. But that would take them out of their comfort zones.

Ed Ziegner weeps.

Anonymous said...

In reference to the excise police story, no one knows what really happened except the Chief. He knows why and keep his mouth shut. One would think that the Democraps would have been grateful but no they turned their backs on him including Congresswoman Carson. The "allegations" were nothing more than that. Newman spent hundreds of thousands of dollars of taxpayers dollars. Plea agreements HAD to be made because Newman was ruthless and he knows what little evidence he had would not stand up in court, but once a man is destroyed it is hard to fight. As far as the ghost employment it was on John Dugan only and that was BS too. Maybe the Chief did a few things wrong, but he did one hell of a job while he was there. The officers got damn good raises, training etc...
Newman had a motive and he accomplished it. Riddle me this, what politican has not hired a family member, friend or done a favor for someone?

Anonymous said...

Newman supports peashakes in our communities and uses them as part of his operations...The hell with what the neighborhood residents wants.