Casting call for Virginia drama could put Coker in the spotlight
As the Clown Show that is the Virginia Democratic Party unfolded this past week, we thought the unfolding scandal was just ripe for a Netflix or HBO mini-series. As of yesterday the Virginia, Cradle of Presidents, has produced three state officials — all Democrats — who are apparently either racists in blackface, racists in KKK garb, a post-birth abortionist and/or a sexual predator. Damn, we thought, we should have paid closer attention in screenwriting class in college — we could make a mint!
But there are other Tennesseans who might be able to cash in. So when we stumbled across this on the InterChatNetFace, we got a great idea:
When the casting call goes out for Game of Thrones: Virginia Edition we don’t know where they can find any dragons, but we gotcher dwarf right here:
And best of all, Bob’s scheduled just recently completely opened up. He’s tan, rested and just itching for a new gig.
You are welcome, Hollywood.
Who will be Gov. Lee’s “plus one” at the State of the Union?
Bill Lee has decided to leave Tennessee for a couple days to go to the State of the Union speech in Washington, DC. Lee probably deserves a short break. After all, he has been governor for about 2 whole weeks now. Time to cut loose and recharge the ol’ batteries! Road trip to D.C.!
But there is a serious question that the Guv will need to answer first. Will he take a senior staff member with him, and if so, which one?
The two obvious choices are either chief of staff Blake Harris or the new CEO Butch Eley. But a fair warning to Billy Lee: you are going to have some explainin’ to do if you take either one of them. Especially if you have to introduce them to the Prez.
Why, you ask? Well let’s start with Eley. While President Trump was pulling out all the stops to get Marsha Blackburn (and Bill Lee for that matter) elected, Eley was making large contributions to Marsha’s opponent, Phillary Bredesen. While Trump was trying to ensure we keep a Republican Senate, Eley was hoping we didn’t and put his money where his heart is. What is surprising is that Bill Lee put him in charge of the state. Nothing like thinking you were voting for a conservative Republican, only to have him turn the keys to the car over to a Democrat who spent most of his political career trying to keep Republicans from getting elected.
Then there’s Blake Harris. Harris lucked into his current job by working for a guy who originally was thought to have no chance of getting elected – but did.
But Harris has an extensive record of being anti-Trump (yeah, the same Trump who carried 93 of Tennessee’s 95 counties). He was campaign manager for Sen. Ben Sasse – a strong Never-Trumper and he worked for GOP Cong. Martha Robey (AL) who publicly attacked Trump. And just a few months before he signed on with Bill Lee, Harris spewed out a series of messages that left no one in doubt that he was a virulent opponent to Donald Trump:
And there is Bill Lee himself. After following Bill Haslam — the only Republican governor to publicly announce he would not vote for Trump – Lee takes office and the first thing he does is hire as his two top staffers people who hate Trump.
Have a nice trip to DC, guys. Don’t forget to get a selfie with the Donald.
There’s a fascinating story from the Tennessee Star last week about how Bob “I-used-to-be-somebody” Corker threw a hissy fit on a plane from DC to Tennessee.
Seems the Bobster noticed a Nashville businessman who used to give Corker campaign donations but, according to the story, stopped when he began to suspect that the diminutive former senator was a major sleaze who used his position to enrich himself with all sorts of insider deals. RTP had a whole series of stories about that very thing (to see them just go to the archives and type in “Corker” or “pipsqueak” and they should pop up).
The Star story went on at some length to describe the scene between Corker and financial advisor Tim Pagliara, replete with Corker on his knees in his seat, peering over the back of the seat to get at Pagliara, who found himself surrounded, since Corker’s former chief-of-staff Todd Womack was in the seat behind him.
What in hell would possess Corker to antagonistically confront a constituent in a cramped public space with numerous people within earshot hearing his every word. Our guess is that the mere presence of Pagliara was enough to remind Corker his reputation would need some repair work if he were to run for another office. Maybe an office currently held by someone whose name rhymes with “rump”?
But we digress. The Star covered the contretemps well enough, but it was one line in the long story that caught our eye. It was where Womack, while trying to defend Corker and himself over a deal where millions in profits were realized. “We didn’t make that much money off the deal,” Womack said.
Uh, what do you mean “We”, Kemosabe?
Was Todd in business with Corker while the two of them were employed by the Senate? And does Womack’s annual Senate financial disclosure statements (required of chiefs of staff) reflect what he made on the deal? Inquiring minds want to know.
Womack also offered to provide Pagliara a copy of a release form showing what happened to a $22 million contingency debt Corker had on the sale of his business. A debt that seems to have magically “disappeared” when Wells Fargo stepped in to take over the loan from GE Capital.
Yet another question for Womack (and Corker). Have you or can you produce the release? It’s an important damn question. Maybe when the Tennessean is done laying off employees, they might find time to look into this (Ha, ha. Just kidding. They are nowhere close to stopping the layoffs.).
When Corker went into the Senate, he was reportedly worth a few (as in low six figures) million dollars. By the time he left 12 years later his estimated worth was between $65 – $90 million! So how does one make that much money when your only job is being a U.S. Senator?
Corker may want to check his bank account. National political races and reputational management consultants cost a lot of money.
Yeah, for a few months there we had real lives. Babies, graduations, weddings, drunken nights in Bangkok (well maybe not the Bangkok part – but you get the idea). But then we wandered down to Legislative Plaza only to find they had moved the legislature someplace else. All we found were storage boxes and a tumbleweed blowing through where the snack bar used to be. That got us curious.
Truth is the crew here at Rocky Top was a little bored with our blog. We grew tired of having to sober up before noon so we could dazzle everyone with our extensive sources and incredible political analyses and still make it to the bar by happy hour.
Things were starting to get a little stale. Haslam was a lame duck, Corker had become a full-fledged self-destructive little pipsqueak. Even Glen Casada decided to hang out with people his own age.
Even the governor’s race didn’t interest us that much.
We watched in wonder as Diane Black (who was arguably the most qualified to be governor) went down in flames. Randy Boyd (the wealthiest – and most annoying), barely came in second while his campaign spent the equivalent of the gross domestic product of a medium-sized African nation. But hey — Chip Saltsman got wealthy as his campaign manager, so that’s something of a silver lining, we guess. Beth Harwell was the most pitiful. And then there was Billy Lee.
Lee turned a real personal tragedy into a book, inherited the family business, then married his kids’ teacher, all of which gave him an inexplicable reason to run for governor (hinting that he had received the personal endorsement of the Holy Spirit didn’t hurt either.) It is understandable if Lee and his team think they were political geniuses, but they would be wrong. They were smart enough to take the only path to winning that was available to them: let the others fight outside the school cafeteria, while Lee snuck back inside and stole everyone’s lunch. But don’t get cocky, kids. 64% of the GOP primary voters voted for someone other than Bill Lee. Lee’s margin for error over the next four years is very thin.
Marsha Blackburn trounced Phillary Bredesen and became the senator the establishment hates. Mark Green was handed a congressional seat on a silver platter (Green’s former patient, Saddam Hussein, would have been so proud of him had he not been unfortunately hanged some years ago). John Rose married a girl he used to “mentor” when she was a high school student, but wrote a check for a few million and bought a golden ticket to DC. And Tim Burchett finally admitted (or did he?) that Big Foot wasn’t real and was awarded one of the state’s “Congressman for Life” slots.
“But, but, why are you picking on Republicans?” we hear you whine. In the words of the great bank robber Willie Sutton: “Because that’s where the money is.” And by “money” we mean the tax dollars and state contracts being lined up by lobbyists advising Bill Lee. They are like pigs at the trough, waiting to get the neophyte governor to do their bidding and fill their pockets.
As for going after Democrats, well that would just be cruel. Like shooting the terminally wounded.
So now to answer the question that probably no one is asking, but we will answer it anyway. Is RTP back for real?
We will not be publishing as frequently as we used to. Mrs. Hot Chick thinks that’s why we got bored in the first place. But when we do spout off, we will try to make it good.
One final reminder: We still don’t care what your opinion is. But keep leaking us good stuff and maybe you can join our elite army:
The Few. The Proud. The Merry Band of Tipsters.
COMING SOON to a spam filter near you:
- The education of Billy Lee.
- That pain you’re feeling Governor is just Glen Casada channeling Jimmy Naifeh.
- Randy McNally: Run silent, run deep.
- Butch Ely says: “You can’t work here. Hell, you’re a conservative!”
Boyd Bites the Burrito. Big time.
[Editors’ Note: Before we begin, many of our readers (okay, okay, both of our readers) have been wondering what happened to Rocky Top. Well here is the short answer: we actually have lives outside of the voyeuristic pleasure many of you get when reading our incendiary columns. So excuse us for living.
Mrs. Hot Chick just had yet another baby (which leads us to wonder, does Mr. Hot Chick ever give it a rest?), so her contributions have been curtailed until future notice. As for the other two crew members, we were growing increasingly bored with the whole thing and decided to take a sabbatical to regain our perspective. That, of course, did not work.
But when the inexecrable Sen. Todd Gardenhire (R-Pissed Off) and Rep, Mark White (R-Ino) decided to make another run at using our tax dollars to reward people for breaking into our country, we decided to rev up the old motor and take them on.
So is this post a return of RTP to the political battles, or is it a one-time tirade? Who cares? Enjoy it while you got it.]
Viva La Raza Randy!
or in language Boyd can understand:
“Esto est estupido. Aparentementa soy un completo idiota,” dijo el Sr. Randy
It didn’t take long for the college tuition subsidies for illegal aliens issue to hit the governor’s race. That is not surprising. What is surprising is the how the Diane Black campaign deftly took advantage of the situation as compared to incredibly stupid reaction from the Boyd campaign.
RTP has no favorites in the governor’s race, so we can approach this as objectively as a bunch of political hacks can approach any political subject on a given day.
Black immediately jumped out in front of the issue and declared she would veto the bill brought by Gardenhire and White which would subsidize illegal aliens by giving them in-state tuition rates. She then trotted out statements and advertising that solidified her opposition. (For the record, so did Bill Lee, but as Ricky Bobby once said: “If you ain’t first, you’re last.”). Beth Harwell reinvigorated the Bathroom Caucus by characteristically remaining silent and on the sideline any time a controversy emerges. “The signs are everywhere,” Beth. And your cowardice on this issue is perhaps the biggest sign your campaign is going nowhere.
But not Randy Boyd. Oh, nooo. El Jefe Randy probably should have remained at least quiet on the subject, given his history of bankrolling illegal alien project (i.e., $250,000 in personal contributions for La Raza-supported training programs that help teach illegals how to take American restaurant jobs), Senior Randy just had to open his mouth and let loose with this little gem:
“We need to bring more people in to the state of Tennessee, and I want to bring people in … from wherever in the world they want to come from.”
Maybe El Gobernador wannabe Randy did not get the message that his campaign’s internal polling has been screaming at him: taxpayer-funded subsidies for illegals is a devastatingly bad issue for any GOP candidate who embraces it. And while trying to filibuster his response to avoid taking a firm stand, Boyd just can’t seem to stop talking. Look for Black to take his above statement and wrap it around his neck like a cheap serape.
Adios, Senor Randy.
Time to stick a fork in the Cork?
The slow strip tease that is the Corker “reconsideration dance” is starting to wear thin. Senate Leader Mitch McConnell has now said that he “has no problem” with Marsha Blackburn’s chances at keeping the senate seat in the Republican column, undermining Coker’s “will he?/won’t he?” act. Even the pollster who released numbers purporting to show Blackburn losing to Bredesen by 2 points, which the Corker people promoted as proof that he needed to get into the race, did a major backtrack on his on poll.
Blackburn has made it clear she won’t roll over for Corker and the recent polls show she would beat him handily. And observers find it hard to believe that Corker – absent some sort of “Roy Moore” opposition research on Blackburn – would be willing to risk his place in history as well as his enormous ego by getting his butt kicked by the “Brentwood Barbie.”
RTP sources in DC say that earlier in the week, Corker was seen running down to the White House to see if Trump would weigh in. There are media reports that he met with Ivanka Trump, but the Trumps apparently declined to get involved (gee, we wonder why).
We predict this will all come to a head within just a few days, with Corker once again “coming up short
Rocky Top has heard the rumor from multiple sources. Is it true?
We don’t know. But the rumor and the spin-off speculation has become so prevalent that it is impossible to ignore.
Here is the gist of it:
Corker is looking seriously at “un-retirement” and/or is being encouraged to do so by prominent financial players who are worried that former Cong. Stephen Fincher is badly trailing Cong. Marsha Blackburn. Independent and internal polls that we have seen confirm that Fincher is losing by as many as 35 points. After bragging late last year that he would significantly outraise Blackburn, the most recent FEC reports show that it was Blackburn took those honors by several hundred thousand dollars, increasing the fundraising gap with Fincher. All this has dramatically increased the discomfort among the state’s establishment Republicans who loathe Blackburn and her independent brand of conservatism.
The name at the center of the rumors is – no surprise – Tom Ingram. Ingram has reportedly made numerous calls sounding out leaders’ opinions for a Corker redux. If Ingram is involved, it’s real.
For his part, Corker is said to have been surprised at how quickly his influence in the Senate has waned since he announced his retirement last fall. For someone whose ego is considered one of the biggest in the Senate (no mean feat), his growing irrelevance has been more than he bargained for. RTP sources in DC report that Corker has rather openly speculated about a run for President in 2020, with or without Trump on the ballot (stop laughing, it’s true) but that is a pretty farfetched possibility.
That leads us to offer some of our patented, astute political analysis as to what may be behind these rumors:
- Upset that Blackburn may get elected to the Senate, the establishment is trying to get Corker to reconsider.
- Corker is actually reconsidering or has already decided to jump back in.
- This could also be a panicked attempt to try and freeze Blackburn’s growing prospects and/or encourage someone besides Fincher to get in the race, since he seems to be going nowhere fast and election day is less than 6 months away.
- The establishment is setting the stage for them to support Bredesen over Blackburn. It’s happened before – remember “Republicans for Bredesen” in 2002? Didn’t Tom Ingram’s wife play a significant role in that effort?
This could all get real interesting, real fast.
Yeah, yeah – we know – gratuitous sexual innuendo and juvenile, irresponsible attempts at humor. But hey – it’s what we do.
But how else to address one of the most blatant misuse of taxpayer’s money in Nashville’s recent history for a politician’s – ahem – personal use. It is not only corrupt, it is a classic demonstration of hypocritical, double-standard, sleazy, unethical malfeasance.
Not to mention icky.
Unless you were living in Thomas Demonbreun’s cave on the Cumberland River the last 24 hours, you know the uber-liberal darling of the Democrat Party, Mayor Megan “Hot Lips” Barry has been using the taxpayer’s money to cheat on her husband with the head (“head” in this instance is perfectly interchangeable between its literal and colloquial definition) of her security detail. She canoodled with him in Greece and half the continental U.S. while he charged the taxpayers overtime for servicing the mayor. The mayor said they never did it “on the clock”. However, she declined to say whether they did it on the sofa, on the hood of her official car (“if this Tahoe’s a-rocking, don’t come knockin’”), or on the 50-yard-line of Titans stadium. For all we know, they did it on the airplane on their way to Greece, which would make her the Mile High Mayor. Come to think of it, they were together in Denver (the Mile High City) so we guess that would qualify too.
Oh, the Humanity! Oh, the Hypocrisy!
The crew here at Rocky Top have digressed to bathroom humor, because that is exactly what the mayor has earned. And because we are done with the preening, sanctimonious, virtue-signaling jerks (#upyours) like the Mayor who smugly declare their moral, ethical and politically correct superiority over those of us who insist on seeing this scandal for what it is. We so-o-o look forward to the Tennessean’s editorial demanding the immediate resignation of the Mayor. (Wait. Why are you laughing?).
It ain’t like there’s no precedent. Those of us old enough to remember Bill Boner know what we are talking about: Cheating. Corruption. Harmonicas. Phil Donohue. National humiliation. (Look it up Millennials. That’s why God created Google).
Somewhere today, Jeremy Durham is laughing his candy pants off.
Corker trades tax vote for a personal financial windfall?
Rolling Stone rolls all over Corrupt Bob.
Chickens Coming Home to Roost.
We told you so.
Over a year ago, Rocky Top Politics launched a series outlining the myriad of activities in which Sen. Bob Corker has apparently abused the financial and political system to enrich himself while he has been a senator. He did this through complicated financial deals that hid his personal indebtedness, fraudulent and misleading Senate financial disclosure filings, using information gained from his position on the Senate Banking Committee to short the nation’s housing market (making tens of millions of dollars in the process), questionable stock trades in a company with which he had extensive personal connections and sleazy shopping mall real estate deals that has and will put millions of dollars of taxpayer money into his own pockets.
Yep, RTP’s expose was groundbreaking and damning. Which of course meant it was studiously and completely ignored by the mainstream media.
But every dog may get his day, and now it appears the crew here at Rocky Top is getting ours.
It all began with what the denizens of The Swamp (i.e., Washington) are now referring to as the “Corker Kickback.” Over the last several months Corker decided to carve out a new political future by gratuitously slamming President Trump, a man in whose rear Corker stuck his nose up to the hilt to try and gain a major appointment from the president. Trump was having none of it and turned away Bob time and again. Corker then launched into one of his patented snit fits and began trying to exact revenge by going after Trump every chance he got. Hilariously, all his efforts got him were approval numbers among Tennessee Republicans that rivaled those of Hillary Clinton and the announcement he was retiring from the senate (before the voters had the opportunity to through his sorry ass out).
But such self-serving efforts by Corker did not go totally unrewarded. To encourage him for attacking Trump, the liberal MSM began heaping lavish praise on Brave, Brave Sir Robert, placing their collective noses with Bob’s derriere in the same position as Bob did with Trump. The most egregious of the brown-nosers was David Plazas of the TennessCNN, who wrote slobbering wet kisses in the form of multiple columns, praising Corker for his new-found “wokeness.” Other reporters regularly demonstrated their new undying love of convenience for the diminutive junior senator.
[Editor’s note: Plazas now looks like the biggest fool in Tennessee politics – but we guess we were expecting so much more from someone who was not born or raised in Tennessee, didn’t go to school in Tennessee, who never before worked in Tennessee, but lowered himself to move to Tennessee with his hubby in tow to “educate” the ignorant hillbillies.]
When Corker became the lone Republican senator to vote against the president’s tax reform bill, the liberal media nearly had an orgasm extolling Corker’s “statesmanship” and “courage, “and “blah, blah, blah.”
And then it all blew up overnight.
Corker the Statesman – who had vowed on the alter that he would “never vote for a tax bill if it raised the deficit one cent” — took less than a week to completely reverse himself, and vote FOR the tax reform bill.
So Wha’ Happened?
It took almost no time for reporters to inconveniently notice that someone had mysteriously and anonymously put in a teensy-weensy little provision that resulted in Corker and some of his closest friends becoming the personal beneficiaries of millions of dollars in tax breaks. OOPS!
Corker: Who are you going to believe – me or your lying eyes?
As word spread across The Swamp, Corker went into panicked damage control mode and tried to cover his sorry ass with an ever-expanding, ever-changing number of excuses as to why what looked to everyone but Bob to be a slimy, sleazy, corrupt bargain, wasn’t actually what it looked like. Some highlights from the 2017 Bob Corker C.Y.A. Tour:
- “I didn’t write that amendment to the bill. I wasn’t even on the committee.”
Nice try, Senator. Everyone on the current RTP crew has experience in Nashville and/or Washington and we know how it works. No, you probably didn’t write the language putting money in your pocket, because senators almost never actually “write” such language. They leave that to staff, or better yet, verbally and privately ask a buddy on the Finance Committee to drop it into the bill in exchange for doing him or her a solid on the back end with a favor for them on a later vote. It’s sleazy. It’s dishonest. It’s Corker.
- “It wasn’t a large sum. It would mean less than $175,000 a year to me.”
Hey, asshole. Check the average income in Tennessee. It’s a mite less than $175,000, you arrogant little twit
- “Sen. Corker came into the senate a wealthy man and he will leave the senate a wealthy man.”
Well whoopty-freakin’-doo, little man. Seriously? That is a honest to God quote from Corker’s spokesperson from just a couple of days ago. Talk about a complete lack of self-awareness.
Corker then ran to Sen. Orrin Hatch of the Finance Committee who dutifully wrote a carefully-worded “hall pass” of absolution, which Corker than ran out to four network talk shows saying “See, see? This proves I’m not the lying little weasel that appears to all the world that I actually am.” Does Corker’s own words and behavior look like the actions of an innocent man or the actions of a sniveling, self-serving piece of Weinstein? We report, you decide.
But such inside dealing was not the worst part of Corker’s Very, Very Bad, No Good, Lousy Week. After hosing his new-found friends among the left-wing news media by doing an about face (or was it “two-faced”) reversal and voting for the bill he had just voted against days before, it took no time at all for the left-leaning media to body slam Corker to the ground for his perfidy. This from last Friday (12/22/2017):
WOW! You have GOT to read the whole thing. It appears the left-leaning Rolling Stone has revealed Corker in flagrante delecto (that’s Latin for “caught with his pants down”) and they appear to be hot on the trail of other Corker Capers. Beware the woman — or liberal outlet — scorned. Corker better pray there are not other publications working on similar stories.
If all this sounds familiar, it should. Rocky Top Politics wrote about it first.
More on the Corker Kickback and the people who may face seriously ethics and legal problems for doing business with a corrupt politician. Perp-walk anyone?
UT search for a head coach riles political leaders, fans and more.
Okay, the first clue that Ohio State asst. coach Greg Schiano was not a wise choice to be the Vols next head football coach, might have been his connection to the worse scandal in college football history — the Penn State/Jerry Sandusky Pedophilia crime.
This was the headline from the Washington Post from July 2016:
Oh, and let’s make sure our friends in the MSM sports world and the hard-left leaning/failing ESPN apologists understand what we are talking about. Schiano was involved. We ignorant hillbillies just didn’t know about it until deposition transcripts were released last year and Vol fans discovered that info on Sunday. Schiano was described by a fellow Penn State coach as “ashen faced”when he saw coach Sandusky (who is now in prison) doing unspeakably horrible things to a young boy in the Penn State locker room showers. Schiano latter denied it in a tweet, but not under oath. He didn’t resign at the time and there is no record of him every reporting the crime to the police. What a guy! He is just the sort of mentor of young athletes that every parent wants guiding their sons on the gridiron!
But the geniuses in the UT administration thought that PEDOPHILIA issues were just water under the bridge. NO problem. Will never come up.
That is until the customer base of the wealthiest football program in the SEC (aka, Vol fans) rose up in justifiable indignation and demanded the deal that had been crafted in secret be trashed. It took all of about 3-4 hours to accomplish that last Sunday afternoon.
Thank God for “ignorant rednecks” who still possess a moral compass.
Soon-to-be-ex-Athletic Director John Currie and other UT leaders were gob-smacked. Why, hadn’t they received the enthusiastic endorsement for Schiano from Jimmy Haslam (who once had Schiano as one of his two finalists for the head coaching job for the Cleveland Browns)? Considering the abysmal record of the Browns over the last two years, may a pedophile enabler would have been the better choice. This is the same Haslam who jammed through the hiring of Disastrous Dereck Dooley as head coach a few years ago. And who reportedly signed-off on the hiring of Cincinnati’s Butch Jones. (What is it with all these people with Ohio connections? What did Tennessee ever do to piss off Ohio?).
And isn’t Jimmy Haslam’s brother Gov. Bill “Kid” Haslam the chairman of the university’s Board of Trustees? “Slam dunk”, right? Except that particular sports metaphor is a basketball term. And this is Futball, dammit!
And we would be remiss if we did not mention that 4 of the 5 Republican governor candidates issued releases last Sunday condemning the proposed hiring of Schiano. One GOP candidate did not — Randy Boyd. The same Randy Boyd who is the business partner of — wait for it — Jimmy Haslam. See a pattern here? Maybe Chip should tell Randy that checking your manhood at the door because the Haslams want you too is not a particularly good way to instill confidence in your ability to lead Tennessee as governor, especially the 100,000 voters who regularly show up at Neyland Stadium.
Currie claimed he thoroughly vetted Schiano before his secret offer of the job. What did he use to uncover Schiono’s background — a Ouija Board?? Every member of the RTP crew googled “Schiano Sandusky Penn State” and immediately got multiple disgusting hits. Currie apparently used tea leaves and rune sticks. And now Tennessee’s name is smeared because of his incompetence and/or willful ignorance.