The Pittsburgh Investigation: Come And Get It!


“Once the feds get involved and people start down the cooperation path, you never know what you’re going to end up with,” said veteran defense attorney Stanton D. Levenson. “And I think that’s what you’re seeing. They’re moving into areas they didn’t know about originally. (Mod Squad, Post-Gazette)

My speculation is that the Feds are convinced they have something on people higher up than Harper – given their confidence in allowing numerous wee details to leak out over time, since that time.

But now that we are finally past the primary election, and a “new coalition” running on a believable promise of a “clean sweep” has won, it is certainly possible that more individuals will be willing to blow rusty whistles and share new perspectives with the Pittsburgh Investigators – for the sake of the accuracy and appropriateness of whatever charges are coming. Important to get this right. Preferable to be on the right side of history.

While we’re on the subject… remember that public-to-political e-mail lists theory? A new respondent has since reached out to this blog, who has received Wagner campaign e-mails in an account used at, and for, a place of employment over 20 miles from Pittsburgh. That would seem to rule out the exonerating theory of e-mail lists purchased from firms “by zip code”. The respondent further denies ever having subscribed to any political campaign through that account, ruling out the other legitimating avenue. But yes, the respondent indeed claims it had previously been used to sign up for e-mails “from the City (of Pittsburgh) and the Mayor.”

In any event, ring the City Bell if we learn anything new and conclusive about investigations into our city. ProTip: If you have helped, that bell will sound more lovely.

7 thoughts on “The Pittsburgh Investigation: Come And Get It!

  1. Vannevar

    In many ways, if they produce results in a timely manner (December) the investigations could be the best thing ever for an incoming Administration

  2. Helen Gerhardt

    There have been suggestions from numerous directions that the timing of these investigations has not been a mistake, but in fact a definite intervention in campaign outcomes from On High in the Democratic clouds. I've seen no concrete evidence to support such speculation, but that guess seems to be a relatively reasonable conspiracy theory among other, wilder flights of fancy I have known.

    Bram has suggested that Republicans would have backed Wagner to help divide the Dems in the future, as well as see policies more in accord with their own agendas. The converse conveniences of tainting Wagnerstahl may be extrapolated upon by politicos with more aplomb.

    At any rate, I'm glad that some sunshine disinfectant seems to be eminent.

  3. Bram Reichbaum

    For the second time, I know I never said “to divide Dems”. I merely pointed out Wagner was the more conservative Dem, and therefore his election would keep the regions' Dem party ideologically unassuming.

    If the Feds come up with nothing, we'll have to consider their motive for going to these lengths when they did – but as I wrote I'm operating under the assumption they think they really have something.

  4. Helen Gerhardt

    Bram, I'm also operating under that assumption- I think it's reasonable based on the available evidence thus far. But I'm highly motivated to so assume, based on my own political biases, and I want to exercise caution in my leaps to conclusions based on reports of the scattered bread-crumb trail steps of the investigation – following the example of your own careful restraint even as you engage in valuable investigative sleuthing concerning possible misuse of email lists for campaigning.

    Whistleblowing on government corruption and abuse of power at every level is highly honorable public service and should be strongly protected and respected. Such service has evidently made possible a worthy and crucial FBI inquiry into local governance that may well end years of corruption enabled by local authorities and institutions that needed outside intervention. I do hope that the FBI and DOJ exercise due caution and restraint by releasing only information and analysis that is fully grounded in solid evidence.

  5. Helen Gerhardt

    Also, Bram, sorry for misrepresenting your views on Republican motivations for backing Wager – in one of our in-person conversations I thought you did say that you thought Republicans wanted to prevent the formation of a more “unified” Democratic party that would be able to vigorously advance progressive policies. I may have mis-remembered your statement or imputed a “divide and conquer” hypothesis to you from that conversation – and then I didn't absorb the very civil corrective you attempted in an earlier thread.

  6. Bram Reichbaum

    I think we're all starting to overuse the term “whistleblowing”. Not every leak is a whistle, for example, nor is every line of speculation. It seems to me like people are doing their jobs and striking pay dirt (to judge from the reactions of the investigated side).


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