The Bobby Harrell investigation — or whatever it is, or was — continues to be as weird as ever.
Over the weekend, the speaker triumphantly announced that the grand jury investigation of him is over, and his nemesis, Attorney General Alan Wilson, is off the case.
Then, John Monk (who, as you’ll recall, first reported that Harrell was trying secretly to get Wilson kicked off the case) got “sources familiar with the matter” to confirm that the investigation is continuing, now being overseen by 1st Circuit Solicitor David Pascoe rather than Wilson.
Pascoe isn’t commenting. Neither is Wilson.
So. We don’t really know what is going on. But I agree with the conclusion of an editorial in The State today that said at some point, somebody needs to tell us, the people, what’s going on:
But here’s what we do know: Now that the Grand Jury no longer is empaneled, it cannot be argued that there is a legal prohibition on releasing the SLED report. And if Mr. Harrell’s victory dance has any basis — if in fact whatever remains of the criminal investigation is merely pro forma — then there is no reason that Mr. Wilson or Mr. Pascoe or whoever has possession of the report should not release it. Immediately.
For that matter, we don’t understand what legal basis there could be for Mr. Wilson refusing to comment on the status of the case. But then, there has been a lot about this case whose legal basis we have not understood.
It’s understandable that Mr. Wilson wouldn’t want to speak in detail and that the report would remain hidden from the public if the criminal investigation is indeed continuing. But even that must end at some point.
Whenever it ends, and however it ends, the attorney general must give an accounting for the way he has handled the case, and the SLED report must be released to the public. Not just because the subject of the probe has been so adamant in demanding its release, but because the voters need to know who has been doing his job and who has been abusing his office: our attorney general, or the speaker of the House.