Rudy's Buddy Bernie Kerik Is Indicted for Tax Evasion
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This post, written by Steve Benen, originally appeared on The Carpetbagger Report
As in comedy, sometimes in politics, timing is everything. Just this week, for example, Rudy Giuliani was praising the work of his disgraced former police chief, Bernie Kerik.
"Sure, there were issues [with Kerik], but if I have the same degree of success and failure as president of the United States, this country will be in great shape," Giuliani said.
His timing was a little off.
Bernard Kerik expects to be indicted by a federal grand jury by next Friday at the latest, two sources close to the investigation tell ABC News.
The sources say Kerik has told his close friends and members of his legal team that he expects the potential indictment to come before the statute of limitations expires on Nov. 15 on charges that could include tax evasion and bribery.
The early chapters were well-documented by Kerik in his autobiographical account "The Lost Son." The final chapters have yet to be written. They will very likely include a struggle to pay legal bills that could result in the sale of his multi-million-dollar New Jersey mansion, a long stretch in federal prison and severe damage to his consulting practice, which includes lucrative contracts with U.S. ally Jordan, according to multiple sources involved in the investigation.
Giuliani, true to form, is sticking to his story, and insisting that the ends justify the means. "There were mistakes made with Bernie Kerik," Giuliani told the AP, utilizing a classic passive-voice phrase. "But what's the ultimate result for the people of New York City? The ultimate result for the people of New York City was a 74 percent reduction in shootings, a 60 percent reduction in crime, a correction program that went from being one of the worst in the country to one that was on '60 Minutes' as one of the best in the country, 90 percent reduction of violence in the jails."
On its face, it seems odd that Giuliani would argue that corruption should be tolerated if the results exceed expectations, but more importantly, those impressive-sounding statistics turn out to be ... wait for it ... a wild exaggeration of reality.
Greg Sargent did a great job scrutinizing Giuliani's claims about his and Kerik's ability to reduce crime in NYC, and found that the former mayor apparently "told three lies in one sentence."
Steve Benen is a freelance writer/researcher and creator of The Carpetbagger Report. In addition, he is the lead editor of Salon.com's Blog Report, and has been a contributor to Talking Points Memo, Washington Monthly, Crooks & Liars, The American Prospect, and the Guardian.