More stiffing the little guy from haughty Kamala Harris
As we've said more than once, Kamala Harris has an authenticity problem.
This characterization, from Thomas Lifson last month, pretty well sums her up every time a Kamala Harris story comes to light:
Kamala Harris is scary in her pathological ambition, moral flexibility, comfort with deception, and sheer ruthlessness.
So here's a new one, from California watcher Susan Crabtree at RealClearPolitics, reporting Harris's soapboxing at the second presidential debate:
"So in my background as attorney general of California, I took on the big banks who preyed on the homeowners, many of whom lost their homes and will never be able to buy another," Harris said in late July during the second round of Democratic debates in Detroit.
Here's what really happened:
In fact, she and several other state attorneys general were instrumental in negotiating a $25 billion national settlement with five of the top U.S. mortgage lenders to provide debt relief and other financial services to struggling homeowners. But in 2012, just months after Harris secured those funds along with the other state AGs, then-California Gov. Jerry Brown diverted $331 million from California's portion of the settlement to pay off state budget shortfalls incurred before the housing crisis.
Although Harris initially spoke out against Brown's diversion of the funds, she remained silent on a subsequent court battle that began in 2014 — even after she left the attorney general's office and for the last year and a half while serving as senator and during her presidential bid this year.
This is pretty outrageous. Harris shook down some banks in the name of "the people" and then, like a crooked lawyer, didn't give the "winnings" to the clients. Whoever got wronged in this mortgage-lending mess didn't see a penny of the won cash. It all just went to other Democrat priorities within the one-party state.
Sound like the kind of lawyer you'd want to have if you got stiffed in some bank deal? Whatever this is, it's not the doing of the consumer advocate she's now painting herself to be.
Any more than she's the prison-rights advocate she claims to be — she threw thousands of them in jail for petty offenses during her time as state attorney general, kept people in jail beyond their sentences in order to retain them to fight fires, and refused to disavow false testimony from prosecutorial misconduct that would have freed prisoners. She's never been about the little guy.
The mortgage payout story shows two distasteful things about Harris.
One, she plays the old California political machine game (it probably happens in other crooked one-party states, too) of amassing a vast pot of money for one purpose, a virtue-signaling purpose, a purpose that press releases can be released on, and political campaign speeches can be made...and then spending the same pile of cash on something else, something far less salable to the voters, something that will cover up spending mismanagement or fatten pensions. In California, this game is gotten away with all the time. Gas tax is approved by voters to improve roads...and ends up bankrolling bureaucrat and administrative hiring sprees. Federal stimulus money is shoveled into the state for shovel-ready bridges and road improvements — and goes to cover municipal budget holes brought on by mismanagement. Voters approve bond measures in the name of hiring teachers and getting more school supplies for kids in education — and it goes to educrat pensions and union siphon-offs. Harris is comfortable operating that way in taking on the big banks, shaking them down — and just letting the money head elsewhere.
Two, she's still the teacher's pet of Democrats, the sidling, sucking-up, go-along-to-get-along, slept-her-way-to-the-top errand girl the more powerful Democrats like. Crabtree reports that Harris first protested the diversion of the funds and then went silent. Why would she do that? Obviously, she heard from more powerful Democrats, the kind who could make or break her career. An Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez–style boat-rocker she was not. The money was won, the cash was collected, the whole thing went to the government instead of the little guys, and she went along.
This pretty well tells us what kind of leader she would be if, heaven forbid, she should win the presidency. In winning the money and then allowing it to be diverted, she failed the little guys she now says she was serving. And with that, she shows she's never been about serving the people; she's about obeying the greater interests of the Democratic political machine. No wonder she's so popular in those circles — she's been kowtowing to these rich and powerful since the dawn of her career. For voters, the real message, as she vows to take over their health care, hand out reparations to black people, and offer free stuff for votes is clear: that the cash she promises isn't going to get anywhere near the little guys. Not even the illegal aliens she's promising free health care for can believe her.
Image credit: Photo illustration by Monica Showalter with image by Gage Skidmore via Flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0.