Monday, September 10, 2007

It just keeps getting stranger.

I know I should let this case go, as others are covering it in more detail etc. But just when I think it can't get more bizarre....

Craig was arrested, IIRC, in June. He entered a guilty plea in August. Call it six weeks or so. Now he's saying he didn't really understand what he was doing because he was in a panic about being hounded by the media:

Persuading a judge to withdraw a guilty plea is difficult but Craig will argue that he was under too much stress to knowingly plead guilty, Martin said.

"He was under tremendous pressure," Martin said in a telephone interview.

In particular, Martin cited pressure from Craig's hometown newspaper, the Idaho Statesman, which spent months investigating whether Craig engaged in homosexual encounters.

Craig, who has denied such suggestions and accused the newspaper of conducting a "witch hunt," was so concerned about that investigation, he quickly pleaded guilty when arrested in the bathroom sex sting, Martin said. Craig did not consult with a lawyer or appear in court.

So.... given a month with a court date hanging over him, he didn't consult a lawyer? Even knowing that discussions with a lawyer are privileged? Amazingly enough, I find myself agreeing with Arlen Specter:

Minnesota law is that a guilty plea may be withdrawn if it was not intelligently made "and what Sen. Craig did was by no means intelligent," said Specter.

I'm not sure "intelligently made" has the same meaning Specter's applying here... Yes, entering a guilty plea without consulting with an attorney is certainly foolish. But I wonder if that's grounds for overturning a plea. I somehow doubt it.

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