Tim Skubick: Hathaway's silence is not golden for high court

Tim Skubick: Hathaway's silence is not golden in high court's eyes

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By Tim Skubick
FOX 2 Political Analyst

LANSING, Mich. (WJBK) -- Let the piling on begin.

The Michigan Supreme Court, which guards its ethical reputation with great fervor, has a problem:  Justice Diane M. Hathaway is described in a complaint from the U.S. Attorney as a money launderer and maybe more.

Talk about a smudge on the court.

This is a "dreadful development," bemoans the Chief Justice of that esteem body. Republican Justice Robert Young, Jr. opines it is time for his Democratic colleague and or her attorney to "clear the air."  Which is a nice way of saying, prove that you are innocent now.

If you believe the U.S. Attorney, she has a lot of proving to do as Barbara McQuade, in a civil suit, alleges the jurist engaged in a real estate scheme in which she "hid assets in order to support her claim (to a bank) that (she) did not have the financial resources to pay the mortgage on the Michigan property" in question.  They call it fraud.

Actually these allegations are not new and were uncovered last May.  At the time the aforementioned Justice Young called on her to say something.  She has said nothing and the deafening silence is quietly eroding the image of the high court.

This has risen to not only a legal question, but politics is lathered all over it as well. The mouthpiece for the state GOP lamented, she "must protect the integrity" of the court and take "swift and immediate action" to resign from that court.

Apparently the Republican party misplaced the notion of innocent until proven guilty.  But the Democrats would do the same thing if a GOP member of the court was in hot water.

So here the court sits, the day after giving thanks, hoping this ugly mess shows some signs of resolving itself.  Looks like the next move is up to Justice Hathaway whose silence is not so golden for the high court.

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