Welcome to The Ratchet, as in ratchet up the accountability in politics across California. It's Prop Zero's new weekly weigh-in from contributor Keith Esparros. Let us know what you think in the comments below.
The sleazy news about Arnold Schwarzenegger screams daily across the media.
What isn't so loud is the voice of Eric Bauman, Vice-Chair of the California Democratic Party.
His is the first, and only, call for a full investigation into the former Governor of California.
Some decry his demand as partisan politics, but in reality, shouldn’t we be asking how could we live with ourselves if we didn’t look closely at the actions of then-Governor Schwarzenegger?
For seven years, the Governator was arguably the most powerful person in state government. And now we know for every minute of his time in office, there was a woman, identified as Schawarzenegger household staffer Mildred Baena, who could have destroyed his political future with a single phone call.
All she had to do was tell the media she was the mother of the Governor's secret son, the product of an extramarital affair.
That gives Ms. Baena a lot of power. Power to threaten the governor. Perhaps for money, perhaps for influence, perhaps to make sure a friend or relative got preferential treatment from the state.
The U.S. Justice Department is now investigating another politician, John Edwards, for possible campaign finance crimes. The government wants to know if campaign cash went to support his mistress Rielle Hunter.
And the drumbeat may be getting louder for a probe into the former Governor. Responding to questions, a spokesperson for the Attorney General used that cliche, "We can neither confirm nor deny the existence of an investigation."
We have no idea if Mr. Schwarzenegger’s transgressions include political corruption.
But don’t we deserve to know?
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