A new controversy had just bubbled up involving 2020 Democratic Presidential hopeful Kamala Harris that ironically mirrors that of former Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta, concerning a lenient plea deal when Harris was a California prosecutor and later the acting Attorney General.
Both Acosta and Harris presided over two different and unrelated cases involving sexual allegations of gross criminal misconduct by two separate individuals.
In the Acosta case, it was former hedge fund manager billionaire Jeffrey Epstein who apparently received a sweetheart deal by Acosta when he was the acting U.S. Attorney 2008.
That revelation earlier this month created a firestorm among Democrats and the mainstream media, demanding that Acosta resign immediately, although Acosta attempted to defend himself explaining his role at the time, he nevertheless resigned days later.
Harris now faces a similar challenge regarding her role as a California prosecutor overseeing the lenient plea deal she negotiated for former San Diego Mayor Bob Filner, accused of being a serial sexual predator, by over 20 women who testified at the time of his trial in 2013.
The woman accused the 76-year-old Democratic congressmen turned mayor of sexual harassment and misconduct. Some said he put them in “Filner headlocks.” Yet Filner was able to avoid jail time completely, and perhaps even more egregious avoid registering as a sex offender, thanks to Senator Harris.
At the time Filner’s communications director Irene McCormack Jackson was the first to come forward about his behavior in June of 2013.
She alleged that in an elevator, Filner, who was accompanied by a police officer, put her in a headlock and said, “You know I would like to do with these handcuffs?” On another occasion, McCormack said Filner asked her, “Wouldn’t it be great if you took off your panties and worked without them on?”
McCormack filed a sexual harassment lawsuit against the City of San Diego, ultimately winning $250,000 in a 2014 settlement.
The obvious miscarriage-of-justice drew considerable criticism in allowing Filner to plead guilty to state charges of false imprisonment and battery against three Jane Does in exchange for a light sentence.
The former mayor could have faced up to 5-years in prison, instead of just 3-months under “house arrest,” three years’ probation, and partial loss of his mayoral pension.
Maya Raghu, director of workplace equality and senior counsel at the National Women’s Law Center, told the Washington Examiner, “The cultural change since #MeToo is having an impact of how prosecutors listen to victims now. I think it all comes down to whether we believe women and how seriously we take these allegations. In serious instances, you need serious consequences.”
Adding, “Powerful people can afford high-profile legal counsel that others don’t have access to. People such as Filner know how to leverage the system in their favor.”
Indeed he did, with the help of then-prosecutor/Attorney General Kamala Harris, Filner received a similar sweetheart deal as Epstein. However, thus far, the only one who has paid the piper for allowing these two sexual predators to escape justice is Acosta.
What is even more revealing and perhaps illustrates just how politically savvy Harris is, is that she already knew the negative pushback she would receive if this sweetheart plea deal became public knowledge, that she purposely omitted this controversial case from her presidential campaign biography, extolling her career as a prosecutor, including six years as California attorney general.
Ian Sams, the official spokesman for Harris’ presidential campaign, attempted to spin the growing controversy in Harris’ favor stating, “She prosecuted a politician from her own party for sexual harassment, and he pled guilty to a felony. She was broadly praised for taking action.”
Moreover, no rational individual expects Harris to drop out of the Presidential race. However, it would be in the public’s interest if the mainstream media would actually begin looking into the backgrounds of these contenders, as much as they do with the President.