Make us your home page

The Buzz

From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Troxler: Maybe Ray Sansom controversy should never have wound up in court



Howard Troxler: ... If a member of the Legislature can be charged with "official misconduct" or perjury for misrepresenting the purpose of an appropriation —whoa, Nellie! Happens every time Sen. Bigbutt stands up and says he wants to save puppies, when he's really steering a contract to a big contributor.

The Legislature passes hundreds of bills each session. The budget contains thousands of items. Opening it all up to external second-guessing, with grand juries and elected prosecutors poring over every item to look for "falsification," is a daunting prospect.

At least, that's the point Sansom's lawyer makes in one of his motions to dismiss the charges. The other branches of government, he argues, cannot "attack the actions of the Legislature under the guise of criminal prosecution."

[Last modified: Thursday, September 9, 2010 2:15pm]


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours