February 2, 2001, - 1:28 am
We already know the Democrats’ oft-rehearsed concern for female victims of sexual harassment is mere lip service. Throughout the Clinton administration, the nation was treated to a consistent river of examples that belie their claimed concern.
Whether it was Paula, Monica, Kathleen, or one of the other multiple Jane Does; whether it was Hillary Clinton’s attempt to get the U.N. Conference on Women to allow child prostitution and sex rights for girls as young as age 10; for the last eight years, all women were VOBs: Victims of Bill.
And in the tradition of Clinton’s presidency, he ended with one last bang against women and children, his pardoning of ex-Congressman Mel Reynolds.
While outrage abounds regarding Jesse Jackson’s illicit affair and lovechild and Bill Clinton’s unconscionable pardons like that of billionaire fugitive and renounced U.S. citizen Marc Rich, Reynolds’ pardon may be even more appalling.
Given the way the Democrats have treated Reynolds over the years, however, it’s certainly not surprising. And it’s the pardon that ties Jackson and Clinton together in scandal, yet again.
While he represented inner-city Chicago, Reynolds was a good friend of the Nation of Islam’s Louis Farrakhan. They were such close friends that Reynolds had no problem spouting some of Farrakhan’s various anti-Semitic incantations against Jews while in office.
But all of this vicious hate couldn’t help Reynolds when he helped himself to regular illegal sexual relations with a 16-year-old “campaign worker,” Beverly T. Heard. A tape of an explicit June 6, 1994, phone conversation between Heard and Reynolds was exhibit number TR-1 in People v. Melvin Reynolds, a trial that ended in Reynolds’ conviction. Reynolds was sentenced to several years in federal prison for this and fraud and corruption convictions; his wife and three children went on welfare in Boston.
A sampling of Reynolds’ phone conversation rivals the lurid detail of Clinton’s lewd behavior in the Starr Report. Various underwear choices and sex acts are graphically described by Reynolds to his youthful female target. This includes a planned threesome with a 15-year-old Catholic schoolgirl named Theresa. Awestruck with the prospect, Reynolds rhetorically asks, “Did I win the Lotto?” It’s enough to make Reynolds’ pardoner, Monica’s boyfriend, blush.
And not only was Reynolds pardoned by Clinton, but he was hired by Rev. Jesse Jackson’s Operation PUSH to decrease the number of young blacks going to prison. Given its new employee — teen “romance” king Reynolds — it’s ironic that Jackson founded PUSH to persuade minority students to avoid, among other things, teen-age pregnancy. Until Clinton’s pardon, Reynolds, like any other convicted child molester, was required to register as a sex offender in each place he lived.
Contrast Jackson’s and Clinton’s nonchalant and — worse — forgiving attitude toward this convicted child rapist and sex offender to the behavior on the other side of the aisle toward his Republican counterpart. In 1989, conservative Republican Congressman Donald “Buz” Lukens of Ohio was caught on tape discussing his sexual relationship with an underage teen-ager. The sting, set-up by FOX’s now defunct “A Current Affair,” at a Columbus, Ohio, McDonald’s, ended with Lukens’ 1990 conviction for under-age sex, jail time, a mandatory AIDS test and sex-offender counseling.
But, even before charges were filed against Lukens by authorities, then-House Republican Whip Newt Gingrich, called for Lukens to resign and filed ethics charges against Lukens with the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct. Even Republicans, like Rep. John Kasich — who cut his political teeth as an aide to Lukens when he was an Ohio state senator — called for Lukens’ removal. House Republicans even funded and campaigned for a successful Republican primary opponent against Lukens, Rep. John Boehner. In Reynolds’ case, just like Clinton’s, House Democrats did nothing, insisting that this was a matter for the courts to decide.
Lukens resigned from the House in disgrace, served his jail time, got prostate cancer and is now broke. But, at the end of his presidency in 1992, President George Bush didn’t even think of pardoning Lukens, nor did any conservative organization hire him in any capacity, unlike Jackson and PUSH have done for Reynolds.
But that’s the difference between Democrats and Republicans, between conservatives and liberals. Sex offenders are persona non grata in the party of Lincoln. For Democrats, it’s just imitation — the sincerest form of flattery — for the just-retired commander in chief. And just like Clinton, Reynolds never showed any form of remorse for what he did, whether it was to the girl he molested, or to Laurance Capriotti, whom Reynolds cheated, among others, out of $25,000 to earn his 1997 fraud and corruption convictions.
(Capriotti, himself, is now under investigation by the U.S. attorney’s office, the FBI, the IRS and other agencies for the disappearance of $68 million from Independent Trust Corp., which acts as a custodian for investors’ retirement, real estate and other cash accounts. The $25,000 Reynolds stole from Capriotti, likely stolen from his investors, was “loaned” by Capriotti to Reynolds in an effort to block legislation that would tighten regulation of title companies.)
When he learned of his pardon, the newly “religious” Reynolds told parishioners of Chicago’s South Side Salem Baptist Church, where he is now community development director (in addition to his PUSH job), that it was G-d who arranged his last-minute pardon and jail-sentence commutation.
No, contrary to Democratic Party belief, Bill Clinton isn’t G-d. He just thinks he is.
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