Former Democratic Über fund-raiser Norman Hsu has already pleaded guilty to charges related to his $60 million Ponzi scheme, and yesterday his trial on campaign-finance violations began. Prosecutors accuse Hsu of threatening to cut off his investors if they didn’t donate money to his preferred political candidates, which they did, in droves. He would use his continuing clout with the Democratic Party to attract more investors, and one way he’d prove his connections was by playing an exceedingly gushing, grateful, and — maybe it’s just us — almost flirtatious voice mail left by Hillary Clinton in the nascent stages of her presidential campaign, which the jury heard yesterday:
What am I going to do with you, Norman? You are working so hard for me that I just don’t know what to say any more. I’ve never seen anybody who has been more loyal and more effective and really just having greater success supporting someone than you. Everywhere I go, you’re there. If you’re not, you’re sending someone to be part of my events. You know, we’re going to win this campaign, Norman, because you’re singlehandedly going to make that happen. Get some sleep. Slow down for a few minutes. We’re going to get to the end of the first quarter and then we can all take a little rest. Lots of love. Bye bye.
Wow. That seems like a lot of pressure to put on one person. Hsu was “single-handedly” going to win her the presidency? With those kinds of expectations, who wouldn’t intimidate their Ponzi-scheme investors into forking over campaign contributions?