There are many people who read this blog who are not from around here, and for you guys I'm sure it seems odd that I never mention the fact that I live in Richmond, Virginia, preferring to use the quaint name of the suburb of Short Pump instead. It's an excellent question. Richmond is a city of historical significance, an abundance of southern charm, and enough beautiful scenery to attract thousands of visitors every year. But there's a reason I never mention being from here. It's because I'm embarrassed.
Over the past thirty years or so, this city has been governed by a series of bottom-feeding, pocket-lining ne'er-do-wells who make Donald Trump look elegant by comparison. First, there was Leonidas Young, a Baptist pastor who while mayor was convicted of influence peddling for, among other things, stealing money from one of his parishioners.
Just before his death early this year, Young announced his candidacy for the House of Delegates seat vacated by THIS MAN...
This is Joe Morrissey...more about him later. Only in Richmond could something like this happen. In our city, public service and prison time seem inexorably linked. Back in the 90's, we had a rather flamboyant City Councilman named Chuck Richardson. While serving on council he was caught in a sting operation buying heroin from an undercover cop. Sentenced to ten years in prison with nine suspended, Richardson, paid his debt to society only to be arrested again for possession ten years later. But in Richmond politics, a prison record isn't a disqualifier for public service, it's more like a resume enhancement. Today, Chuck Richardson has a street named after him!
Our current mayor, Dwight Jones, yet another pastor, has been putting on a clinic of cronyism, enriching his church and its members at every conceivable opportunity.
But, he looks awesome in a suit, so he's got THAT going for him. Which brings us back to Mr. Morrissey. In many ways, Joe Morrissey is a ground-breaker of sleeze for our city. What I'm about to describe for you will sound so fantastic, so unbelievable, you will be tempted to think that I am making it all up. Surely, no one this unfit could be a serious candidate for Mayor of a city as big as Richmond. Think again...
Joe "say it ain't so" Morrissey burst onto the scene back in 1989 as the 30 year old firebrand who got elected as Commonwealth Attorney for the city. During his 15 year law career, Joe was found in contempt of court no less than ten times, and arrested five times. When he was finally disbarred in 2001, the presiding judge summed up Morrissey quite nicely...
"... frequent episodes of unethical, contumacious, or outright inappropriate conduct...the evidence demonstrates Morrisseys 15 year history of contempt citations, fines, suspensions, and even
incarceration arising from unprofessional conduct...mostly involving an uncontrollable temper and dishonesty."
But, it gets even better. In August of 2013 Joe was found by police in his home with a 17 year old girl who worked in his office. Let's just say...they weren't exactly discussing the finer points of the law. A year later Morrissey was indicted on felony charges of indecent liberties with a minor, possession and distribution of child pornography, and solicitation of a minor. Ok..you better sit down for this one...while serving his jail term for the above conviction, he ran for a seat in the General Assembly...and won in a landslide.
Even our slimy governor, Terry McAuliffe, who never met a felon he didn't like, was forced to disavow Morrissey and kick him out of the Democratic Party. Oh, did I mention the fact that every single member of this Rogue's gallery are Democrats? Anyway, Joe is finally out of prison and doing what all disgraced politicians in Richmond do...running for mayor. In a poll released early this week, he has a commanding lead.
But, maybe Joe is a new man. I mean, after fathering five children by four different women, none of whom ever married him, Joe finally tied the knot...with the 17 year old girl he was busted with. Like all couples who have their first child together, the Morrissey's decided to take a family portrait to introduce the child to the world. Joe Morrissey being Joe Morrissey, THIS is what they went with...
Yes, if you had been thrown in jail for having carnal relations with a 17 year old and produced a child, this is exactly how you would want to announce the new arrival to the world, right? Yeah, let's go with the antebellum look.
This man is likely to become the first popularly elected mayor of the City of Richmond in 12 years.
To which I say...of course he will.