The Governor Speaks on Impeachment

September 7, 2012

In an interview with KSPN News Governor Fitial called the impeachment charges against him frivolous and election year politics. The Saipan Tribune reported that the governor will be "writing a letter to the Legislature to respond to the 16 articles of impeachment." He was quoted:
“I didn't do anything wrong. As a matter of fact, I'm the only one doing something for the people.” 
The governor said that he was shocked that the impeachment resolution was filed while he was off-island. He also claimed he "has been open to meeting with lawmakers if they have concerns." This from the same governor who called the people of Rota "stupid" and told opponents to "drink milk"!

Since when has the governor listened to concerns or discussed matters with opponents? Anyone who questions the governor, anyone who criticizes the governor and anyone who does not follow the governor's orders (for example anyone who refuses to switch party affiliation) knows that he or his family member will lose their government job or be attacked. This includes cabinet members and Sentaor Paul Manglona's brother.

The governor admitted to a KSPN reporter that he had his police officer driver take Buckingham and his wife to the airport. The governor said that the former AG had "sold everything, including his car" and therefore needed a ride.

Can this man ever tell the truth? Former AG Buckingham could have called a cab! In fact, he could have had one of the attorneys he worked with at the OAG drop him at the airport.

The only reason that Buckingham received a ride and an escort from on-duty police officers was because his exit was meant to be an escape. The thug police squad was needed to aide and abet him in his obstruction of justice. 

It is obvious that Buckingham left earlier than the scheduled and planned flight. In fact an attorney called Buckingham's exit a "cloak and dagger departure". In the blog, The Island Attorney. the attorney wrote:
"As they exited their apartment, police officers surrounded the couple, forming a barricade between the Attorney General and bystanders. With the assistance of at least two police vehicles and perhaps a third government vehicle, AG Buckingham made his way into the airport to catch a 6 :00 a.m. flight to Japan."
This suggests that indeed Buckingham was in the apartment when investigators tried to serve the penal summons. His wife lied to investigators, claiming that the former AG was not there.

The attorney also said that many in the legal community were shocked by Buckingham's exit. According to the blog, Buckingham left before a planned going away party without saying goodbye. He left to avoid facing criminal charges, not because he wanted to "spend time with his family", or because he "has health issues" as he claimed.

Does the governor truly believe that he can convince the public that high ranking police officers, including the governor's driver, the DPS deputy commissioner and the Ports Authority Chief of Police all just went to the airport for a little farewell send-off for Buckingham? Does he expect everyone to believe that these on-duty officers decided that since they were there, they might as well assault a KSPN news reporter? Since they were there they might as well prevent investigators from serving the former AG with a penal summons that he had already avoided being served for 15 hours ? Does the governor expect the public to believe that since these officers were "innocently" at the airport, they might as well try to close down an airport departure lounge restaurant to shield the former AG from being served the court summons?

As an attorney, former AG Buckingham knows the law. He knows that he should not have obstructed justice in avoiding service of the summons. He knows that he broke the law by failing to appear in court. If the governor was not in on the ploy, was hasn't he fired the officers who were involved? If the governor was not involved, why didn't he immediately condemn the actions of the police officers and the former AG?

Not only is this governor arrogant, defiant and unrepentant, but he is not smart enough to realize that he has crossed the line one time too many for the people to let him to squirm his way out this time. All of the Cheshire Cat smiles in the world, all of the pathetic excuses and all of the lies will no longer erase his many transgressions and corrupt acts. The list has grown far too long; the suffering of the people has grown far too great. It is past time that Governor Fitial be made to answer to his many corrupt acts and misdeeds.

It wasn't enough for Fitial to lie about the articles of impeachment.  In interviews with KSPN and the Saipan Tribune he also attacked the lawmakers who filed the resolution saying they were trying to detract from the fact that they themselves were "inactive" and caused the suffering of the people of the CNMI. He said that they have no justification to be re-elected so they are pointing their fingers at the governor.

He further lied that he did not abuse government resources. Yes, he did. When he took the prisoner out of and had her escorted to his house in government vehicles with several officers, he abused resources. When he allowed his driver to escort the Buckinghams to the airport, he abused public resources. When he encouraged cabinet members to sponsor political campaigns and dismissed them from violating the Hatch Act, he abused public resources.

The governor stated that there is no merit to these charges; he has never been arrested or charged. The Office of the Public Auditor needs to release a report and/or file criminal charges against the governor for his participation in the airpot fiasco now! The U.S. Department of Justice and the DHS need to investigate the fiasco at the airport now.

Many are hoping that at long last the governor may have been caught in his own tangled web of lies. Still, how many members of the House will put their own self-serving agendas ahead of the best interests of the CNMI?


Anonymous said...

As someone pointed out to me, the buckinghams could also have used the free, and very reliable, airport transport available at the Aquarius (where they lived).
Donna J. Cruz