Feeling the prospective sting of accountability that socialist grifters rarely experience in their natural lives, Sen. Bernie Sanders is lashing out at those accusing his wife of an alleged financial fraud that caused Burlington College to collapse last year.
Media reports also indicate prosecutors could be investigating the Independent U.S. senator from Vermont for allegedly attempting to muscle the bank into approving the loan.
The leftist power couple lawyered up, reportedly hiring big-name defense attorneys. Rich Cassidy of Burlington, Vt., is representing Bernie, while Beltway insider Larry Robbins, who advised Lewis "Scooter" Libby, former chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney, is acting for Jane.
Sanders, who used to be mayor of Burlington, said it was “fairly pathetic” that his family was being attacked and seemed to hint that the allegations of fraud and undue influence materialized out of thin air. He described his wife as “about the most honest person I know."
As the small college’s president from 2004 to 2011, Jane O’Meara Sanders apparently bankrupted the nontraditional institution of higher learning founded in 1972 through reckless spending – just as her husband promised to do to America if elected president of the United States. When it went under, the college sent out a press release blaming the “crushing weight of debt” Mrs. Sanders incurred for its demise.
The FBI is reportedly investigating Jane Sanders for allegedly misrepresenting donations to the college in a $10 million loan application to People's United Bank in 2010. The money was to acquire 33 acres of land from a cash-strapped church to expand the college. The property was on the shores of Lake Champlain.
As a media outlet reported last year,
The purchase was huge—especially for a school whose annual budget didn’t crack $4 million. Jane Sanders plan was to bet big. To finance the deal, Burlington issued tax-free bonds, took a $3.5 million loan from the diocese, and received a $500,000 bridge loan from Tony Pomerleau, a wealthy local real-estate developer and close friend of the Sanderses.
Enrollment at the college and donations to it did go up but not enough to service the added levels of debt. After sowing the seeds of the school’s destruction, Mrs. Sanders grabbed her golden parachute and moved on.
Sanders left her post in 2011, for reasons undisclosed. Her successor Christine Plunkett tried to bring more financial stability but failed, and in 2014, its accreditor placed it on probation. Plunkett resigned. In November 2014, interim President Mike Smith sold 25 of the original 33 acres to a local developer for $7.5 million. Of that, $4 million went to the diocese to pay for the land—Burlington College hadn’t paid for all of it yet—and the rest went to the school’s bank.
Naturally, the senator reacted to the allegations made against the Sanderses by becoming haughty and indignant.
"My wife is about the most honest person I know," the celebrated millionaire Marxist said Tuesday on CNN. "All that I will tell you now is it's a sad state of affairs in America when not only we have politicians being destroyed ... but when you go after people's wives. That's pretty pathetic."
Instead of letting the process play out, Sanders suggested somebody somewhere somehow was out to get him and the missus.
"That's all I'm going to say. I think it's fairly pathetic that when people are involved in public life not only do they get attacked, but their wives and their families get attacked," he said.
Why Sanders would believe the probe into his wife’s activities, which got underway during the Obama administration, was politically motivated is unclear.
If the septuagenarian Sanders is pointing an accusing finger at Donald Trump, he may want to conserve his energy for his next futile presidential bid.
At this point, President Trump barely has control over the law enforcement and investigative functions of the federal government. Trump is surrounded by enemies virtually everywhere in what, after all, is supposed to be his administration. The Department of Justice and the IRS, for example, are jam-packed with the kind of employees who admire Sanders, including left-wingers, Democrats, and Obama holdovers.
Besides, there is some evidence of possible wrongdoing.
Mrs. Sanders reportedly told the bank in 2010 that the college had $2.6 million in pledged donations but the college indicated it took in just $676,000 in donations from 2010 through 2014.
And philanthropist Corinne Bove Maietta is accusing Mrs. Sanders of misrepresenting her financial support for Burlington College. Maietta has said a Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC) investigator interviewed her about her giving to the college.
Maietta claims she agreed to donate an unspecified sum upon her death but documents reportedly indicate Mrs. Sanders recorded the unenforceable promise as a series of cash payments, treating the pledge as collateral for the real estate loan, according to VTDigger.org.
The Vermont-based website reports:
The 2010 loan agreement says “CBM” pledged $1 million to the school over five years in increments of $150,000, with a final payment of $100,000 in year six.
In an interview, Maietta was incredulous that Burlington College would try to use her bequest to secure a bank loan. “You can’t borrow money on the future,” she said. “That doesn’t exist.”
When she heard how her pledge was listed in the loan document, she was surprised. “They had me in increments? No, never,” Maietta said.
Maietta said in the end she donated less than $100,000 to the college. She “was adamant that she never signed anything with the college, despite Sanders personally asking her to do so,” according to VTDigger.org.
So it’s smoke and mirrors. Accounting tricks. Nothing new for left-wingers. They’ve been getting away with conning people for well over a century in the U.S.
The Sanderses probably won’t be losing much sleep over the investigation.
The former presidential candidate is “going to get a big benefit of the doubt, particularly with his supporters," Democratic strategist Joe Trippi said.
Ditto with the legions of federal employees, including investigators and prosecutors, who to this day are still feeling the Bern.