— Byron York (@ByronYork) July 30, 2014
Leland Yee needed cash. CNN needed credibility. Somehow, both lost their way.
(Is LeLand Yee a Democrat? You won’t find out until the fourth paragraph)
CNN‘s Matt Smith and Jason Carroll hot on the scene: First, the ambitious California state senator had to fund his 2011 race for mayor of San Francisco. When he came in fifth, he was stuck with $70,000 in campaign debt that he had to retire before he could mount his next run, for secretary of state — a costly statewide venture.
And that’s how prosecutors say Yee ended up sitting across from an undercover federal agent in a coffee shop in early March, brokering what he was told was a $2 million arms deal that would include the purchase of shoulder-fired missiles from Islamic rebels in the Philippines.
“Do I think we can make some money? I think we can make some money,” Yee told the agent in a conversation recounted in a 137-page arrest affidavit. “Do I think we can get the goods? I think we can get the goods.”
The veteran Democrat, an advocate for gun control and campaign finance reform in Sacramento, is now one of about two dozen people charged in a sprawling racketeering case brought by the U.S. attorney’s office in San Francisco. His co-defendants include a former San Francisco school board president and a previously-convicted Chinatown mobster dubbed “Shrimp Boy.”
He’s accused of putting his public office up for sale, and promising to push donors’ agendas in Sacramento and in his district in exchange for contributions. The allegations have stunned his constituents in San Francisco and its suburbs and cast a shadow over his state Senate colleagues, who have suspended Yee and two other Democrats who have run afoul of the law in recent months. Read the rest of this entry »
[VIDEO] Anti-Gun Senator Leland Yee: ‘The Laws He Was Pushing Pale in Comparison to The Laws He Was Breaking’Posted: April 5, 2014
NRA News‘ Ginny Simone reports the story the way CNN should have
California State Senator Leland Yee, a leading gun-control activist, was arrested March 26 in an FBI sting and charged with conspiring to traffic in firearms and public corruption. “This is heavy-duty international arms trafficking with organized crime figures,” says Civil Rights Attorney Chuck Michel. “The laws that he was pushing pale in comparison to the laws that he was breaking.”
The Leland Yee story is one of the most remarkable in years. A California State Senator, Yee has long been a leading spokesman for gun control–it’s all for the children, you know. A popular politician who represents around one-half of San Francisco, Yee was about to run for Secretary of State when he was arrested for gun running. Specifically, he acted as an intermediary to buy shoulder-fired missiles and automatic weapons from a Muslim terrorist group in the Philippines and import them into the U.S. There were other charges, too; the usual bribery, money laundering, and so on.
‘Uncle Leland’: Political Ambition and Debt Put California Senator on a Collision Course with FBI in Five-Year Corruption StingPosted: April 4, 2014
The mobster, who claimed to hail from New Jersey, wanted millions of dollars worth of smuggled firearms: automatic weapons, “shoulder-fired” missiles. Yee, 65, a career politician whose square, earnest face was a fixture in Chinatown, and who was perennially seen stumping for stricter gun control laws in Sacramento, said he was confident he could help. For a fee, the Democrat indicated he could connect the mobster with a high-end arms dealer with contacts in Russia, the Ukraine, “Muslim countries.”
“Do I think we can make some money? I think we can make some money,” Yee said. But the transaction was not for the “faint of heart,” he warned: The last time Yee had dealt with an arms dealer, they were in the Philippines, and Yee was surrounded by bodyguards with machine guns.
@TheINDYpundit It’s in line with us covering state senators & state secretary of state races just about never. You see another conspiracy?
— CNN.com Writers (@CNNWriters) March 28, 2014
Shameless. Breitbart has coverage:
CNN dismissed complaints that the network was not covering last week’s shocking arrest of Democrat Leland Yee, the California state senator who was arrested for alleged arms trafficking and bribery, and falsely asserted that it does not give attention to state senators.
That standard did not apply to Texas state Sen. Wendy Davis, whom CNN covered relentlessly. This was long before she even considered a gubernatorial run after filibustering a bill to ban abortions after 20 weeks and make those conducted before then safer.
Viewers and readers on Friday complained that the network, just like Politico, was not reporting or discussing Yee’s scandal online, and the official and verified @CNNWriters account tweeted to one critic that ignoring Yee’s arrest was standard practice. (read more here)
AWR Hawkins reports: California state Senator Leland Yee (D), who was indicted on charges of arms trafficking and public corruption, was allegedly lured into these crimes by a gang led by Raymond “Shrimp Boy” Chow, described as “the dragonhead” for “one of the most powerful Asian gangs in America.”
According to the Associated Press, Chow’s gang allegedly “lured state Sen. Leland Yee into its clutches through money and campaign contributions in exchange for legislative help.” The offers of money came at a time when Yee sought to amass the finances necessary to launch a campaign to become California’s secretary of state.
“…he ran prostitution rings, smuggled drugs, and extorted thousands of dollars from business owners in the 1980s.”
Chow was born in Hong Kong in 1960. He moved to the United States at age 16, dropped out of high school, and “rose within the ranks of the local Hop Sing Tong after he and his crew survived a 1977 shooting at a Chinatown restaurant that left five dead and about a dozen injured.” Read the rest of this entry »
My only complaint about Breitbart.com‘s fixation with Politico.com‘s news coverage is its assumption that anyone thinks Politico is relevant in the first place. A search in Breitbart.com’s site reveals 9,240 references to Politico. 9,240, really?
Breitbart.com‘s Warner Todd Huston writes: The world of political news was captivated by Thursday’s report of the arrest for gun trafficking of a famously anti-gun California state senator. Yet while most other news outlets reported the incident, Politico, an outlet that supposedly leads the nation in political news, didn’t post a single story on the incident the day the news broke.
“The story is quite a shocking one, too. During an investigation, Yee is accused of telling an undercover FBI agent that he would spend as much as $2.5 million on automatic, “shoulder-fired” weapons…”
California State Senator Leland Yee (D-San Francisco) made a name for himself by becoming one of the most virulently anti-gun legislators in a state filled with anti-gun legislators. On March 27, news broke that Yee had been arrested for corruption the day before. He wasn’t just arrested for run-of-the-mill corruption, either. He was arrested under charges of attempting to actually supply guns to local gangs.
Now, one would think that this would be big, big political news… Read the rest of this entry »