9:00 AM EDT, May 4, 2012
Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz and County Council members have an old but far from comforting message for those worried by their acceptance of thousands of dollars worth of gifts from developers in the form of tickets to Ravens and Orioles games ("Kamenetz, council members got tickets from developers," May 2).
Basically their response is that reliable stand-by: "We did nothing wrong, and we won't do it again."
Everyone knows there's just one reason developers and their land-use lawyers want to ply public officials with gifts: To get favorable treatment that can make them big money when the opportunity arises.
This is a very old game. There's no mystery about it, despite their protestations to the contrary. Do any of these officials have the guts to simply tell the public: "I was wrong. I will pay the money back to the donors. I'm sorry for breaking your trust — and I won't do it again?"
Remember: If you want to practice legal graft, you have to get elected to theU.S. Congress, where that sort of behavior is considered business as usual.
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