This is state level Tea Party insanity, but the Governor has now stepped in, so I think it merits a mention:
Governor Chafee on Wednesday joined the chorus of political leaders calling for state Rep. Daniel P. Gordon to step aside, following his recent arrest and revelations about his lengthy criminal history in Massachusetts. “While I commend Representative Gordon for acknowledging his personal challenges, I concur with [House Speaker Gordon D.] Fox and [House Minority Leader Brian] Newberry that he is no longer able to effectively serve his constituents,” Chafee said in a statement. “Some time away from political life may give Representative Gordon the ability to focus on his own recovery. His arrest and the subsequent attention on his past, however, are a tremendous distraction for our state.”
Gordon rejected the request, saying that Chafee had no business mixing in the General Assembly’s affairs. “I work for my constituents, not the governor. I’ll step down when he steps down.”
Tyranny! Don’t you tread on me, mister.
State Rep. Daniel P. Gordon, who blamed alcohol and legal problems on combat stress sustained in the 1991 Gulf War, never served in the Gulf, according to his military records. Gordon also claims that he suffered a shrapnel injury to his leg; however, his records do not list a Purple Heart, ordinarily awarded for injury sustained in combat.
“There appears to be no listing of combat tour of duty in the Middle East,” said Maj. Stewart T. Upton, head of media operations in the public affairs office for the Marine Corps at the Pentagon. “I don’t see a Kuwait Service Medal or any combat action or Purple Heart,” Upton said. Excepting any inaccuracies, “obviously we’re saying the information in front of us doesn’t have these tours of duty that he’s talking about.”
He was in the military, though, so that part is true:
While he could not provide his military discharge papers, Gordon did provide a Jan. 13, 2011, financial statement from the federal Department of Veterans Affairs showing that he was honorably discharged from the Marines after serving from June 4, 1987, to Nov. 12, 1991. It also states that he receives a $123-a-month benefit from the government for a “service-connected disability.”
The military service record revelations are the latest in a series of discrepancies in Gordon’s account of his past. That includes his contracting business, Alliance Building Contractors LLC, which is registered to what officials say is a nonexistent street address in Connecticut. “We don’t have a 2 Stonington Ave.,” said Adele Adriano of the Stonington assessor’s office. “I have a 3-5 Stonington Ave. East and a 54 Stonington Ave. West,” she said, “but in the center, there’s nothing. You can even see that there was a brook that ran through the middle of it.” Gordon also is not a licensed contractor in Rhode Island or Connecticut. according to public records.
He is wanted in Massachusetts, so he went to the state police to make sure they found out about that, I guess:
Gordon’s troubles began last week when he went to file a cyber-stalking complaint with the state police, related to comments people posted about him on the Internet. A police record check revealed that Gordon was driving on a suspended license and was wanted in Massachusetts for failing to appear in court in 2008 on charges including eluding the police and driving with a revoked license. The arrest led to public disclosure of a criminal record in Massachusetts, including four months in jail in 1999 for assault with a dangerous weapon, and an attempted murder charge in 2004 that was later dismissed.
Attempted murder? He was charged 12 times over 18 years, including six assault and battery charges.
This is his part of the Tea Party Facebook battle that led to his going to state police to lodge a complaint against his fellow Tea Partiers:
“Please pass the word to her … she is destroying all semblense [sic] of cohesiveness. We have had it. She is a liar, fake, and subversive. We real Tea Party conservatives have had enough of her traitorism,” Gordon writes. In another Facebook post, Gordon accuses one of his Republican House colleagues of spreading rumors that he is an alcoholic, and of trying to unseat a conservative state senator.
And, this is the sort of important work he’s been doing since he landed in the state legislature:
He made headlines in March when he criticized Tiverton High School for allowing the formation of a Gay-Straight Alliance student group.