Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Let's Play "Name that Party!"

Nine months before the alleged meth-for-sex scandal that would end his political career and humiliate his Virginia home town, Mayor Scott Silverthorne stood in the middle of the Fairfax City Council chambers, his hands clasped and his grin wide.

Next to him on Nov. 17, council member Jeffrey C. Greenfield was reading a proclamation in honor of Silverthorne’s 50th birthday. The document detailed what made him so special to the community he had led since 2012: a lifelong resident, son of another mayor, product of the local high school, first elected to the council in his mid-20s. The proclamation called him “a consensus builder,” “a passionate leader” and “the best politician the city ever had.”
. . .
On Aug. 4, he was charged with felony distribution of methamphetamine after police said he attempted to exchange drugs for group sex. His arrest outside the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Tysons Corner resulted from an undercover operation conducted by Fairfax County police, who received a tip that he was using a website to make illicit arrangements with men. His friends and colleagues knew he was gay, but he didn’t often discuss it.

If Silverthorne used drugs, according to those interviewed, he kept it hidden. His inner circle is still trying to determine whether his alleged involvement with drugs extends beyond the parking lot incident, one close friend said.
Shades of former D.C. Mayor Marion Barry, who claimed he only went along with the FBI informant who got him to smoke crack on videotape because he wanted sex with her.

I might have missed it, but nowhere in this article does the Washington Post identify which political party Silverthorne belonged to.  Those of us residing close to Washington D.C. and Northern Virginia would assume that without any notice to the contrary, he was a Democrat, even without knowing his sexual preferences, but readers outside the beltway miasma might not take that for granted. But you can be sure that if a Republican had committed these acts, his party identification would be early and prominent in the article.

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