The Discerning Texan
-- Edmund Burke
Friday, September 28, 2007
- Laundering donations
- Bribing politicians for their later "endorsement"
- Covering their tracks
Read the rest here. And wouldn't you know it--the very same Winkle Paw has gone missing:
Hillary Clinton certainly made off the best from Norman Hsu's political bounty, reeling in roughly one third of his $2.5 million in sketchy fundraising thus far uncovered. But a piece in today's Boston Globe ponders whether even Hsu's non-Hillary-bound cash had covertly Hillary-friendly aims.
Disgraced fund-raiser Norman Hsu did a lot more than just pump $850,000 into Hillary Clinton's campaign bank account: He also raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for local, state, and federal candidates who have endorsed Clinton or whose support she courted.
In at least some cases, Clinton or her aides directly channeled contributions from Hsu and his network to other politicians supportive of her presidential campaign, according to interviews and campaign finance records.
[I]n February, when former Iowa governor Tom Vilsack ended his own White House bid, he was about $450,000 in the red. A month after dropping out, Vilsack endorsed Clinton, and Clinton agreed to help him retire his debts. (Both insisted there was no quid pro quo.)
Over the next few months, some of Clinton's biggest fund-raisers gave Vilsack checks, including Hsu, who kicked in the maximum allowable contribution, $2,300, on May 3 after attending an event organized by Clinton's campaign, Newsweek reported this month. An associate of Hsu's, Paul Su, chipped in $1,000 on the same day.
And the next day, Susan Chilman chipped in $500. Yes, Chilman (aka TV actress Susan Pari) is on only my suspicious donor list and not yet widely accepted as a Hsu associate by the dead tree crowd, but for posterity, I'm pegging Vilsack's total known take at $3,800, not $3,300.
In other cases, Clinton helped direct Hsu's money to influential politicians who have yet to endorse her but hail from key presidential primary states. Clinton raised at least $6,000 from Hsu and his network last year for Governor John Lynch of New Hampshire, according to Lynch aides. Lynch has no plans to endorse anyone before the state's crucial January primary, aides said.
Interesting. I've only got $2,000 going to Lynch - all of it from our buddy Winkle Paw. Part of the difficulty here is the fact that New Hampshire's campaign finance disclosure is, well, lacking. Governor Lynch has an opportunity to do the public a great service by disclosing who contributed the other $4,000, so they can be added to the roster of Hsu bundlees. This is my e-mail address.
Again, there is much more where that came from.
Winkle Paw, Hsu's most delightfully named associate, seems to have turned up missing.
According to campaign finance disclosures, Paw has served as everything from project analyst to CEO at a handful of Hsu's companies, including Components, Ltd., Next Components, Next Electronics, and CoolPowers (though that last one could've been a poor transcription of the word "Components" by a Tom Harkin campaign staffer). Paw was actually CEO of Next Components (one of those companies I couldn't seem to locate in my tour of Hsu's facilities) nearly two years before becoming a business analyst at the firm this summer, according to the filings, which is an interesting career trajectory.
Up through 2005, Paw also listed the (legitimate) investment management firm Franklin Templeton as his employer on more than two dozen filings, where he was also variably a "project analyst" or a "business analyst" (never making it to CEO though). A visitor from the firm's San Mateo office visited this site yesterday, linking in from a search on "Winkle Paw", possibly a concerned cube-mate wondering if she can stop watering his plants.
In all, Winkle made more than $150,000 in political contributions to at least 40 Hsu-favored candidates and committees since 2004. 6 other members of the Paw family (all holed up in that cozy green house in Daly City) gave another $143,000. Khin Mon, who may or may not be related to the Paws (but who, as reported here first, also resides in the Paw house), gave another $12,000 over the same period.In addition to Winkle Paw's association with Hsu-owned businesses, I'm told that Hsu reportedly indicated to Martin Waters (the manager of the Orange County investment fund that Hsu is now accused of defrauding out of $23 million) that he had designated Paw an authorized signatory on his bank account, such that their business dealings could continue should anything happen to Hsu. According to an individual with knowledge of the situation, the day before the San Mateo court appearance that Hsu would fail to make, Waters (still presuming Hsu's business dealings to be legitimate) offered to step into Hsu's... well, shoes during any period of incarceration that might follow.
Well, well, well. Remember the good old days, when all those potential Whitewater witnesses went dead or missing. Except of course for Susan McDougal... wonder what she is up to today; relaxing on her yacht, perhaps?
Fast forward about 10 years: now we have one potential "witness" against the Clintons caught trying to skip the country. And now we have another--reportedly Hsu's "successor"--who has also gone missing.
Make no mistake: when you get between the Clintons and power, you want to watch your back. So here's a note to Flip and the others on the cutting edge of this story: be careful out there. Because these power hungry sociopaths don't play "nice".