The final witness for the prosecution took the stand this morning in the Ted Stevens corruption trial. The judge allowed prosecutors to call David Anderson, welder, and nephew of former Veco CEO Bill Allen, He supervised work on Stevens’ chalet. Stevens is accused of accepting more than $200,000 in renovations on his Girdwood, Alaska residence from Allen, and failing to disclose it on his Senate Financial Disclosure forms.
Anderson detailed the work he and Williams did on the Stevens home, including jacking it up to add a bottom story.
“It took a couple of weeks,” Anderson said. “One of the problems with Girdwood is you got to buy your materials from Anchorage and bring your materials from anchorage. So it’s time consuming for sure.”
Anderson’s testimony delayed the defense case, meaning his lawyers won’t be able to call one of their star witnesses until Friday or later: former Secretary of State Colin Powell.
During this trial, it seems like the prosecution is doing everything possible to tick off the judge. Sending witnesses home to Alaska without notice, withholding evidence favorable to the defense…. Alaskans have seen plenty of lawmakers get taken down by the FBI in the last two years, and we are used to a swift kill from the feds. It’s usually clean, decisive and devastating. We know they can do it…but this one feels different.
A team of bloggers is there, with an interesting quirky take on all the stuff you won’t hear from the MSM, plus the ins and outs of the prosecutions’ “oops” moments throughout the trial. Describing Allen’s welding nephew:
His Jack Nicholson baritone picked up noticeably when the prosecutor’s questions turned to the nitty gritty of construction. Everyone else in the room, on the other hand, was falling asleep, doing crossword puzzles, sneaking emails on their Blackberries.
He used terms like roust-a-bout, cribbing and skinning the walls. At one point he even told a joke, that no one else got: “We had a compactor rodeo!” he said, laughing uproariously. He’d been talking about compacting the dirt under the foundation of the garage.
Stevens’ support in Alaska is still huge, despite the first viable challenge to his seat from Democratic opponent Mark Begich. The outcome of the election may very well hinge on the outcome of the trial.
The defense will start off with their first witness, long-time Stevens friend and supporter Senator Daniel Inouye (D) from Hawaii.
Interestingly, Cliff Groh’s blog “Alaska Political Corruption” which was also featuring blogging from the Stevens trial, and that I featured a few posts ago, has mysteriously vanished…
UPDATE: Looks like the link was bad or updated….HERE it is. Good.