Over at Lee Stranahan's blog Chad Haber has issued a statement about Brandon Taliaferro's wise decision to withdraw as Annette Bosworth's attorney. Haber or Stranahan or Bosworth or a 100 monkeys who magically got a computer to work properly and typed out words in English begin with a frightening possibility:
Today, my wife Annette Bosworth’s attorney Brandon Taliaferro successfully filed a motion to withdraw as my wife’s attorney. She faces an unprecented [sic] political prosecution: 12 felony counts that could send her to prison for 24 years related to her recent run for the GOP nomination for U.S. Senate.Twenty-four years is the same amount of time as four Senate terms. Does anyone remember if Bosworth supported term limits for either senators or prisoners? I would not be so glib if Bosworth were actually facing 24 years behind bars; she's not. David Montgomery writes,
Annette Bosworth isn't going to prison.
The former U.S. Senate candidate, now facing 12 felony election law charges, may or may not realize this. Her charges formally could send her to prison for two years each if she were convicted or pleaded guilty.
"Marty Jackley wants to send me to prison for 24 years," Bosworth said in early June. "Marty Jackley wants me shackled and locked in a cage, unable to see my children graduate from high school or college."
But under South Dakota's 2013 criminal justice reform, low-level, nonviolent felonies like Bosworth's alleged perjury charges don't send people to prison even if the law says it's possible. There's a "presumption of probation." That's not to say Bosworth might not be given a brief spell in county jail as part of a guilty verdict, but prison won't happen for what she did.[Emphasis mine] Montgomery, Argus Leader, 7/30/24Haber et al then claim "[i]f anyone has a reason to fear Marty Jackley, it’s Brandon Taliaferro." That seems rather magnanimous. The statement goes on to say, "I wish him well" before accusing him of panicking a few lines later. If one has reason to fear, how does that fear suddenly get termed a "panic"? Also, when one wishes someone well, one generally tries to help them improve the situation. It's unclear how accusing a defense attorney of panicking is going to help him get clients and stay in business. The context makes the good wishes smack of a sarcastic cheap shot
Further, I'm not an expert on attorney-client privilege, but I'm willing to bet that the ethical rules surrounding that privilege prevent him from publicly responding to the following, especially if Bosworth had been in the room at the the time the alleged conversation took place.
Taliaferro personally told Lee and me about his fear of revenge from South Dakota Attorney General. He was afraid the increased publicity we were bringing to the Mette case would hurt him personally and professionally.In a few short sentences, Haber and company have gone from praising Taliaferro to condemning him as cowardly and self-serving. Again, it's not clear how accusing someone of being self-serving is synonymous with wishing him well
In an earlier post, Haber et al print an email Taliaferro sent to Bosworth enumerating the reasons for his desire to withdraw from the case. They include Haber continuing his campaign for attorney general, Stranahan refusing to stop speaking out publicly about Bosworth and the Mette case, a silly video that Bosworth and Stranahan made, and the small matter of a $25,000 retainer. (Just to be clear, the word "small" is being used ironically") The documents that Haber et al want the public to see are embedded below.
Earlier I mused that Bosworth is trying and failing to turn herself into a true tragic hero. Haber's comments seem to be an effort at the same end. They will achieve the same failed result. If one wants to think about true heroes who were persecuted, one should think about Anne Frank who was captured 70 years ago today. Thankfully, Haber, Stranahan, and Bosworth haven't tried to appropriate her legacy as they continue this self-serving melodrama.