What’s Wrong With This Picture?
New Mexico Democratic Governor Bill Richardson tapped by President-elect Barack Obama for Secretary of Commerce has withdrawn his nomination according to MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell.
So what’s wrong with this picture?
Richardson is the subject of a secret grand jury, reportedly over charges of a possible pay-to-play scheme with a California investment company CDR Financial Products.
CDR, a contributor to Richardson’s political campaigns received a sole source contract in 2003 with the New Mexico Finance Authority and pocketed $1.4 million in fees over bond deals. The State claimed the deal had saved the public $8 million.
Richardson ran for the Democratic Presidential nomination and withdrew just under a year ago. The Gov. backed Obama and upset the Hilary Clinton campaign.
Richardson was the Ambassador to the United Nations and Secretary of Energy under President Bill Clinton. Previously he was elected seven times to Congress from the then newly created northern New Mexico District.
Richardson will remain as Governor and plans to complete his remaining two years.
His anticipated departure to Washington would have meant that Lt. Gov. Diane Denish, left, seen the day before the Nov. 5 election, would become Governor upon his confirmation.
This development will have political ramifications on both sides of the political aisle.