The news that Paul Manafort has decided to cooperate with special counsel Robert Mueller prompted Newsmax reporter John Gizzi to do a little mstiy-eyed reminiscing. About Manfort's dad. No, really.
From Gizzi's Sept. 19 article, deceptively headlined "The Paul Manafort I Know":
Official Washington was jolted Friday by the news that former Donald Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort had decided to cooperate with the Department of Justice—including Robert Mueller’s probe of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
The sartorial splendor of Manafort, his vast collection of horses and luxury homes in New York, and his schemes to avoid paying taxes on his foreign income—all will probably be rehashed in the media when the famous political consultant’s name comes up in the weeks ahead.
But, for those of us who are older and grew up in or near the Hardware City of New Britain, Connecticut, the name “Paul Manafort” evokes other memories.
Paul Manafort, namesake-father of the current Manafort, was the three-term Republican mayor of New Britain. Growing up next door in a close suburb, New Britain was an urban mecca to me — blue collar, industrial, and ethnic.
In 1981, Manafort’s name appeared in headlines when he was charged with two counts of perjury. He had insisted he did not know that an envelope he was given by New Britain’s personnel director contained answers to exams for promotion to sergeant on the city’s police department (which two Manafort family friends were vying for). A jury subsequently acquitted the former mayor.
When Paul Manafort died in 2013 at age 89, that final black mark on his life of public service was barely mentioned in obituaries. His funeral was one of the biggest New Britain had ever seen.
Today the name Paul Manafort evokes a lot of negative feelings. But to this reporter, who grew up on the New Britain border, it generates quite different memories.
Gizzi made no mention of what exactly Manafort the younger did to generate those "negative feelings."