Friday, August 31, 2007

Enough With The Hsu Jokes, Or I'll Hsu

I'm telling you, this Hillary Clinton-Norman Hsu business makes it feel like it's still 1997. A Clinton is running for president again fueled by shady Asian fundraising hijinx. It's like the past decade never happened.

The latest item ticked off the list is that Mrs. Clinton is only returning part of her Hsu-catalyzed contributions:
Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton’s campaign said yesterday that it would give to charity $23,000 it had received from a prominent Democratic donor, and review thousands of dollars more that he had raised, after learning that the authorities in California had a warrant for his arrest stemming from a 1991 fraud case. ...

On his own, Mr. Hsu wrote checks totaling $255,970 to a variety of Democratic candidates and committees since 2004. Even though he was a bundler for Mrs. Clinton, his largess was spread across the Democratic Party and included $5,000 to the political action committee of Senator Barack Obama, Democrat of Illinois.

Last month, Mr. Hsu was among the honored guests at a fund-raiser for Representative Patrick J. Kennedy, Democrat of Rhode Island, given by Stephen A. Schwarzman of the Blackstone Group at the New York Yacht Club.

Al Franken, a Democratic Senate candidate in Minnesota, said he would divest his campaign of Mr. Hsu’s donations, as did Representatives Michael M. Honda and Doris O. Matsui of California and Representative Joe Sestak of Pennsylvania, all Democrats.
This is as opposed to Donk Pennsylvania Governor "Fast Eddie" Rendell, who isn't giving back a single red [*AHEM*] cent.

When I used to write that the Democrat Party had been "Clintonized," things like this are precisely what I meant.

The next shoe to fall was the collapse of Hsu's cover stories and the burgeoning clarity that he's nothing but a Clintonoid bag man:
People who met him said they knew only that he ran an apparel business. Efforts to learn more about his trade hit dead-ends yesterday. Visits to companies at addresses listed by Mr. Hsu on campaign finance records provided little information. There were no offices in buildings in New York’s garment district whose addresses were given for businesses with names like Components Ltd., Cool Planets, Next Components, Coopgors Ltd., NBT and Because Men’s clothing — all listed by Mr. Hsu in federal filings at different times.

At a new loft-style residential condominium in SoHo that was also listed as an address for one of his companies, an employee there said that he had never seen or heard of Mr. Hsu. Another company was listed at a condo that Mr. Hsu had sublet in an elegant residential tower in Midtown Manhattan just off Fifth Avenue, but an employee there said Mr. Hsu moved out two years ago, after having lived there for five years. The employee, who was granted anonymity because he was not authorized to talk about residents, said he recalled that Mr. Hsu had received a lot of mail from the Democratic Party.
No Clinton fundraising story would be complete without Clintonoid (and Democrat) feigned cluelessness:

Hillary Clinton told a Manhattan audience yesterday that her team tries to do the best they can in vetting volunteers. How could any vetting process possibly miss this? None of his story checks out at all, not even with the most cursory look at his record. It's filled with false addresses. Not even his listed residence appears current. Exactly what kind of vetting did Hillary do?

Hilariously, Eliot Spitzer joined Hillary on stage yesterday. The Governor, whose previous job was Attorney General, got $62,000 of Hsu money for his campaign. Are we to believe that the former top law-enforcement officer of the state of New York couldn't find out that Hsu was a fraud?

No one vetted Hsu. The only process Hillary and Spitzer used was cashing the check. If it didn't bounce, Hsu got into the club.

The Admiral asked the key, pertinent, and very pregnant question of just exactly where Hsu got all the boodle he lavished upon the campaign coffers of Hillary and other Donks. This leads to the one development in this story that doesn't fit the standard Clintonoid template - the bagman surrendered:
A top Democratic fundraiser wanted as a fugitive in California turned himself in Friday to face a grand theft charge.

San Mateo County Superior Court Judge H. James Ellis ordered Norman Hsu handcuffed and held on $2 million bond. A bail hearing was scheduled for September 5, at which the judge will consider reducing his bail to $1 million.

Hsu appeared in court accompanied by a lawyer and publicist, both of whom declined to say whether the New York apparel executive would immediately post bail. A warrant was issued for his arrest after he skipped the sentencing for a 1991 grand theft charge.
Every previous Oriental go-between managed to flee the country when it neared their turn to be thrown under the Clintonoid bus. I guess Hsu had too much past heat to make that a viable option.

However, by going back to the hoosegow he removes himself from public scrutiny, and public questions such as the one Ed asked. That's doubtless precisely what Mrs. Clinton had in mind when she got on the horn to Hsu and gave him these marching orders.

Unlike Dean Barnett, I'm not kidding about that suspicion. Assuming Hsu managed to cover the tracks to his fundraising sources better than he did the grand theft charges, this will be one more Clintonoid scandal fire successfully put out.

And if not, well, who will care? Nobody ever sweated any of Bill's & Hill's other racketeering; why would the public start taking offense to it now?