Your support is key 🔑
70% of our budget comes from individual members, making our work possible without paywalls.
Will you join us?
After being indicted last week on charges she leaked classified information, Attorney General Kathleen Kane convened press in the capitol building in Harrisburg today to claim her innocence and not resign despite calls from across the state — including the governor.
press conference statement-reading ceremony where she took no questions was a pretty weird one. Here’s what you missed if you weren’t following along:
1. Kane says she didn’t break any laws, and it’s all the fault of porn
The attorney general was charged last week by a Montgomery County district attorney who, with the help of an empaneled grand jury, decided there was enough evidence to indict Kane on charges she leaked secret grand jury information to The Philadelphia Daily News in order to further herself politically and get back at a foe. But in her six-page statement that she read aloud, Kane didn’t discuss the alleged leaks.
Instead, she claimed the charges and those behind them are part of a wider conspiracy to get her as a result of her going after them for “Porngate.” Remember the porny emails situation? Attorneys and judges who served under former Gov. Tom Corbett’s administration were charged with passing around and laughing at porn via their government email addresses. The uncovering of the emails led to six firings and almost two dozen reprimands within the Office of the Attorney General.
Kane called on a Montgomery County judge to release more of the emails she described as not only containing porn, but also being racially and religiously offensive. Somehow — still unknown to most — this will all relate back to the charges of her leaking unrelated information to the Daily News. She promises.
2. She made it seem like a judge lost his job because of her; he didn’t
State Supreme Court Justice Seamus McCaffery lost his job after it was uncovered that he took part in the passing around of the pornographic emails, and Kane cited that in her statement as a success of some sort. Except Kane didn’t uncover McCaffrey’s role in Porngate. The Allentown Morning Call did.
So in the middle of Kane’s statement-reading, Morning Call reporter Steve Esack took Kane to task about it and asked her if she was taking credit for something she didn’t do. Kane stopped briefly, listened to the question, and didn’t bite. She moved on to continue reading her odd statement aloud.
3. She didn’t take any questions the entire time
Typically, when people hold press conferences, it is set up to be a conference with the press. Kane said earlier this week when she called the press conference that she would take questions from media members, but shortly before the presser, word started trickling out that no one would be able to ask Kane any questions about her indictment.
Sure enough, reporters tried to pepper her with questions to get her to say *something* about the actual charges at hand. Instead, Kane ignored the 80-something reporters in the room and exited without responding — she said the change to not answer any questions was “on the advice of counsel.” But she also mentioned at the beginning of the statement-reading that it would soon “become clear” why she couldn’t answer any questions as she went on to tell her version of the “whole story.”
It’s still not “clear” to us. Anyone else?
4. She talked to her children through the press
After first misstating the name of the movie “Boondock Saints” and calling it “Boondog Millionaire” so she could quote it, Kane looked out into the sea of frustrated reporters and said she was about to talk directly to her sons. She said her two boys found out about her being charged by watching it on television, and she hasn’t had time to speak with them about the charges.
In a bizarre speech to her kids from the lectern, Kane gave them advice about fighting for what’s right and continuing to push back against the “evil” in the world. It was odd and sad and bizarre.
We’re all left wondering: Couldn’t she have just… called them?