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Update: Yet Another Thing NewsMax Doesn't Want You To Know

Plus: Kendall Coffey gets a first-hand lesson in extortion and the politics of personal destruction.

By Terry Krepel
Posted: 5/2/2000

On April 23, Jack Thompson told NewsMax readers that "Aaron Podhurst is arguably the most respected, above-board attorney in the State of Florida. That's why he was asked to serve as 'central mediator' in the attempt to bring about a peaceful resolution of the Elian stand-off." Thompson implies that Podhurst had no ties to anyone involved in the standoff.

Guess what? American Politics Journal reports that Podhurst has close ties to the leadership of the Cuban exile community, including working for the Cuban exile group Brothers to the Rescue. He was one of the lawyers for the families of three Brothers to the Rescue members shot down and killed by Cuban fighter jets in 1996. Most people wouldn't call that "unbiased."

And lest Podhurst get the idea that having signed on with the right-wingers he can drop them without cause, he need only look at today's NewsMax for the penalty for deviating from the party line. Yes, Jack Thompson rips lawyer Kendall Coffey a new one, accusing him of not representing young Elian's interests aggressively enough due to his ties to the Democrats in general and Janet Reno in particular:

"You were the last person that the Miami relatives of Elian Gonzalez should have hired. In fact, as indicated above, you were not hired by them. You were foisted upon them by the Democratic Party to make sure representation did not get too zealous and thus too effective."

Thompson also brings up another reason: The unfortunate alleged incident involving Coffey and a lap dancer that forced Coffey to resign as a federal prosecutor, which ConWebWatch has noted.

And, for good measure, Thompson throws a little extortion into the mix: "Will you allow me to meet with the Miami relatives and tell them what could and should be filed on their and Elian's behalf in the Eleventh Circuit? If you are not hiding anything from them, then that will quickly become obvious, and their faith in you will be affirmed. I am scheduled to appear today on a national television program to discuss all of the above. Therefore, I would suggest you arrange my meeting with them so that your withholding crucial information from them not be continuing at the time of the broadcast."

Remember, these are the folks say they who denounced the "politics of personal destruction" when Bill Clinton was accused of using it.

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