Update on “Corruption”

Last week The Curmudgeon told you the tale of Philadelphia district attorney Seth Williams, who recently reported more than $160,000 worth of gifts he had received between 2010 and 2015. One day Williams woke up, realized that all of these gifts had somehow slipped his mind, and reported them, as elected officials are required, to the appropriate authorities. You can refresh your memory here.

Later, a published report stated that in at least some of the situations involved, Williams apparently had solicited the gifts.

It was all pretty appalling: an elected public prosecutor accepting gifts from people and companies that had business before his office.

Now, Williams has apologized.


Sort of.

First, as reported by the Philadelphia Inquirer,

Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams apologized to his staff Friday for any distractions created by the “adverse publicity” that has surrounded his disclosure of thousands of dollars in previously unreported gifts.

“I understand and recognize that each of you works very hard to represent the commonwealth with integrity and honor,” he wrote in an email obtained by the Inquirer and Daily News. “The adverse publicity about me during this past week has likely made it more difficult for you to do that. I deeply regret and apologize to you for that.”

But when you read about this apology you realize that Williams didn’t apologize for accepting the gifts, didn’t apologize for soliciting the gifts, and didn’t apologize for failing to report the gifts. No he essentially apologized for getting caught, and for his actions – and inactions – that cast aspersions on all of those who work for him.

The following Monday Williams apologized again, this time by email, to his political supporters. Again, as reported by the Philadelphia Inquirer:

“One of my requirements as an elected official is to fully disclose all gifts and or in-kind services I receive, even those from my closest friends and families,” Williams said in an email issued by his campaign. “I take full responsibility on failing to disclose what was required. We’ve taken the proper steps to make sure this doesn’t happen again and will be fully compliant moving forward.”

When you read this you see yet again that Williams didn’t apologize for accepting the gifts and didn’t apologize for soliciting the gifts. His only failure, he seems to believe, was not reporting them. He apparently sees nothing wrong with the gifts he received and his efforts to solicit those gifts.

It’s pretty disgusting.