Monday, January 16, 2017

Is House Minority Leader Scott Inman Being Blackmailed?

Picture shamelessly stolen from the Lost Ogle and yeah,

Bob, Carol, Ted, and Alice
Strange title, I know, but it was a comedy film in the sixties about two couples, one of which had the husband admit to an affair, then coming home early after a business trip and catching his wife in bed with the tennis pro.   Both agree that turnabout was fair play and discussed it with the other couple, causing the other man to admit to an affair, causing the other wife to demand a wife swapping foursome.  Pretty sordid even for the time so the film didn't delve into shall we say "details".

But the name of the film fits this current scandal like a glove, musical beds at the Capitol, with everyone appearing so perverted and corrupt that anything might happen.   And what did happen might explain the six major questions left by the previous article.
  1. Why was Democrat Representative Fourkiller thrown under the bus?  Basically in our opinion Scott Inman needed a sacrificial lamb as it appears it was either him or someone else that had to share the pain that Rep. Kirby was about to be subjected too. More on that a bit further down.
  2. Why was former Rep. Randy Grau not included in the investigation? A better question was why was Grau brought up by Democratic Minority leader Scott Inman in the first place? The woman that hit the $44,500 jackpot, Hollie Bishop, had worked for Rep. Randy Grau before Grau left the House. Grau had announced in April of 2016 that he wouldn't run for re-election, stunning many that knew him well as he had only served six years of the possible 12 years. Grau's excuse at the time was to spend more time with his hospitalized grandfather, his two sons, and focus on his law practice. The real reason is alleged to be that Grau's wife, Renee Grau, had pushed him against the wall shortly before he made his announcement and said leave the Capitol or she would be leaving him.
Bishop had joined the Capitol work force in January of 2013, working as Grau's legislative assistant, and according to wide spread rumors and at least one media report had a two or three year long affair with Grau.   Sources claim that Renee forced Grau to have Bishop reassigned in January of 2015 with Bishop being assigned to Rep. Dan Kirby who promptly began sexually harassing Bishop according to Bishop's formal complaint.  Two things stand out; first that Bishop and Grau were alleged to still be bumping uglies long past that time, with wifey Renee putting the ultimatum down in April of 2016.  Bishop, for whatever faults she might or not have, and if these rumors are true was smart enough not to be bumping uglies with both of the men and some would understand someone like Kirby being upset about being the boss but not getting what Grau had been getting.  Yuck…. I know…

Most would believe that if this were true, Grau for his part would not be pleased that Kirby could be horn dogging what Grau might think was his own personal cooter (no, not referring to Senator David Holt) . Does this excuse Rep. Kirby's alleged actions? Absolutely not, but it would certainly explain why the situation developed.  When Renee Grau allegedly laid down the law to Rep. Randy Grau he announced that he wouldn't seek a fourth term as state rep.  Grau must have had a change of heart about something because he filed for divorce from his wife on May 31st of 2016, only to rescind the suit on June 3rd.   Another three day drinking spree?  Did Kirby learn that from Grau?

Some sources claim that the Rep. Grau/Bishop affair was common knowledge and the subject of many a joke.  Other sources claim that Grau coached Bishop after Bishop was fired from her House duties in November of 2015, perhaps angling for a nice payoff from the House for alleging that Kirby harassed her.    One might believe that Bishop was a bit upset at being booted after filing a formal complaint against Kirby as well as being a little upset with Grau for not preventing the firing.   Whatever the truth is wifey Renee Grau  was said to have had enough in April of 2016 and allegedly issued her ultimatum.

So why should former Rep. Randy Grau be dragged into the investigation?  First as an alleged affair was common knowledge according to many sources, that would be against House rules for Grau to have an affair with a subordinate if it indeed happened. 

Second it shows the House being unresponsive to enforcing the rules which puts all women at the Capitol at risk (and some male pages over in the Senate but that is another story).  House Leadership's failure to act on even the allegations over a three year period could mean a frightfully large lawsuit.  And being responsive is what the EEOC is all about, the duty to prevent problems and too bad if some eggs get broken doing that

And third, if  the rumors and allegations were true and Bishop was actually putting out for Grau that left Bishop in a less secure position, or perhaps a better way to describe it is as more vulnerable to sexual harassment if she had developed a reputation  whether it was warranted or not. 

Finally if Grau had actually coached Bishop or assisted her in the filing or reporting of the sexual harassment claim then it brings up potential culpability in the settlement as his post as an assistant Floor Leader might have made him privy to details about the settlement or even advocating for a quick settlement without the others on the House Leadership team being aware of his alleged or potential conflict of interest.  Some on the team might have thought that they were paying Bishop off to save Rep. Grau, who really knows?
  1. Why are past House members exempted?Other than the allegations against Grau, what other allegations or settlements are out there against House members that either termed out or decided not to run for office again?How many cases were filed and paid?  Including former or at least recent former House members would allow those cases, if any, to be cleaned up.
  2. Why are any charges or allegations that have yet to be formally filed exempted from the investigation?This is in line with question #3, are there any charges or allegations in existence where formal charges have yet to be filed?  Opening things up to all allegations or charges would remove this fig leaf and clean out any perverts being protected.
  3. Chairman Josh Cockcroft is one of former Rep. Randy Grau's close friends why was Cockcroft chosen to lead this effort?As Reps. Grau, Elise Hall, and Josh Cockcroft were best of friends, constant lunch buddies, and allies that negotiated with Speaker Charles McCall during the contentious Speaker Designate race in 2016 why would Cockcroft of all people be chosen to head an investigation that should rightly be investigating the allegations against Grau?  Was it to prevent Grau from being brought up after House Minority Leader Scott Inman mentioned Rep Randy Grau on December 23rd?  The "Lunch Bunch", Grau, Hall, and Cockcroft, were initially on Rep. Leslie Osborn's team during the Speaker Designate race.Was covering up the alleged Grau/Bishop affair part of why they dumped Osborn and began supporting McCall?
  4. And why did House Minority Leader Scott Inman drop off the face of the map after his very public and very aggressive press conference on December 23rd?

The Inman  Connection:

 Inman is Alice
Always save the best for last, right?  Just like desert…
  Our opinion, factoring in all the unanswered questions and tying them into other commonly traded rumors and allegations is that House Minority Leader Scott Inman was blackmailed or coerced into A.) dropping out of the discussion on the sexual harassment investigation and B.) throwing Rep. Fourkiller under the bus to mitigate the damage to the Republican Caucus.   Indeed it might have well been "It's either you or Fourkiller"  or it could have been "I'll give you Fourkiller if you leave me alone."   Only a few know that truth but something happened.

And what was alleged to be in House Minority Leader Scott Inman's basket of dirty laundry?  An alleged affair between Inman and the daughter in law of a legislative assistant that worked for a certain Republican Representative.  We omit the name of the state rep for several reasons, one being that their current legislative assistant is a temp, and that if the rumors are indeed true the daughter in law could have or could not have yet crossed the line into a public person.   The rumors are widespread but as with all rumors a bit diverse.  Some claim that the woman was some sort of campaign worker for Inman, others claim that the woman was either running, belonging to, or working for an outside expenditure group.  If that latter part is true, that if the alleged affair was with a woman that was involved in independent expenditures supporting the Inman campaign, then she will be quickly rooted out and exposed and potentially even  prosecuted for campaign law violations as few would believe that there was no campaign collusion between bouts of bumping uglies.

What the rumors do agree upon is that there was an alleged affair and that the mother in law of the woman openly talked about it amongst the other legislative assistants or at least among a few and nature took its course.   Some rumors claim the mother in law became upset with the woman, some say she was merely boasting, and yeah, it would be a queer mother in law that boasted about her son being cuckolded.  But hey, Bob, Carol, Ted, and Alice is alive and well at the State Capitol.

None of the above is hard fact, much of it is likely rumors that are half true or partly true, only a few actually know.  But what we do know for a fact is that on December 23rd House Minority Leader Scott Inman was a raging bull:

"The taxpaying citizens of the state of Oklahoma should not have to foot the bill for sexual misconduct," said Oklahoma House Minority Leader Scott Inman Friday.

"At a Capitol news conference, Inman said the Democratic Caucus was "shocked and appalled" to read news reports earlier in the week about allegations that money had been quietly authorized to pay a sexual harassment settlement to a female legislative assistant of Representative Dan Kirby, R-Tulsa."

And now Scott Inman is as quiet as a mouse……Why?

As to the actual allegations against both Kirby and Fourkiller, in our opinion we are skeptical that either man is guilty or at least wasn't guilty of picking on innocents.     If the investigation doesn't bring out the exact charges against Fourkiller then politically he is a dead man walking.  One would expect Scott Inman to be demanding openness not abetting secrecy unless of course he prefers to avoid talking about the subject of sexual harassment, cover-ups, and affairs entirely for whatever reasons he might have.  An open investigation will discharge the legislator's duties to the women that work at the Capitol and preclude more lawsuits in the future.