That's My Take: Harry Thomas Jr. - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

That's My Take: Harry Thomas Jr.

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FOX 5's Vice President and General Manager Duffy Dyer gives his take on issues in the DC Region.


Recently, one of three major investigations into the actions of high ranking elected officials in the District of Columbia came to a momentous and emotional conclusion. Then-Councilman Harry Thomas, Jr. pleaded guilty to embezzling more than $350,000 from the city, its taxpayers, and indirectly, the youth of Ward 5. This is in addition to filing false tax returns.

It is gratifying that this long running drama is over. Some of that gratification comes from knowing that Harry Thomas, Jr. denied for many months any wrongdoing even though he agreed to pay back to the city the funds he stole.

Now we are waiting for the results of the federal investigation into Mayor Vincent Gray's campaign spending and the investigation into whether campaign funds were properly accounted for in Council Chairman Kwame Brown's 2008 campaign. In the meantime, the City Council should take another step to address the dark cloud that seems to have taken up permanent residence over the John A. Wilson Building.

It's time for the city to enact a law that prohibits someone from running for office after they have been convicted of a felony.

While I do not underestimate the power of forgiveness, nor do I doubt that someone can be truly rehabilitated, surely we can elect trustworthy leaders who are not tainted with criminal records.

Closing the door to the future possibility that we may see, Harry Thomas, Jr. and any other convicted felon running for office will go a long way in restoring the public trust and burnishing our tarnished reputation.

That’s my take. What’s yours? Comment below here on myfoxdc.com or send me an e-mail at tmt@wttg.com .

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