Not that long-time readers will disagree with me here, but not every single terrible, corrupt politician in America has an (R) besides their name.
Former Louisiana Democratic Party leader Karen Carter Peterson, who resigned from the state Senate last year year citing depression and a gambling addiction — and later pleaded guilty to federal wire fraud — was sentenced on Wednesday to 22 months in prison.
Peterson, who served in the Louisiana Legislature for 22 years, admitted in August to taking more than $140,000 in funds from her reelection campaign and from the state Democratic Party. The ex-lawmaker spent a “substantial amount” of that money on casino gambling, according to court documents.
Peterson, who made restitution, was tearful and apologetic in court. “I want to tell everyone who contributed to my campaign and the Democratic Party, I am sorry,” she said to WWL-TV.
In court filings and in Tuesday’s arguments, defense attorneys had argued for probation rather than time in prison. They cited Peterson’s long record of public service, her Christian faith, her first-offender status and a long struggle with gambling addiction that caused what they called “diminished mental capacity.”
She would be unlikely to be able to continue the individual therapy she needs in prison, her attorneys argued.
Prosecutors said prison time was appropriate. “Peterson’s addiction does not excuse her actions,” they said in one court brief.
They added that it was “imperative that the court acknowledge the severity of Peterson’s betrayal of the public trust and exploitation of the awesome power she wielded as a candidate for public office and leader of a major political party to seek personal pecuniary gain.”
The pre-sentence report prepared by probation officers called for a sentence of 41 to 51 months, The Times-Picayune/The New Orleans Advocate reported.
Here's the thing: Democrats who get caught actually face consequences. Republicans don't, as evidenced primarily by the number of January 6th insurrectionists, human traffickers, and campaign finance cheats still serving in Congress and in state parties in places like Ohio.
Let's compare the 22 months Peterson gets to how much former Ohio state GOP Speaker Larry Householder gets for his multi-billion corruption slush fund trial starting this month if he gets convicted at all.
It's not always the GOP, but it's the vast majority.