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This photo of Mass. speakers speaks volumes

This photo of Mass. speakers speaks volumes

LINEUP: From left, former House speakers Salvatore F. DiMasi, Thomas M. Finneran and Charles F. Flaherty, and current House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo attend funeral services for former state Rep. Edward LeLacheur last summer in Lowell.
Photo by Lowell Sun
By Howie Carr  |   Friday, April 15, 2011  |  http://www.bostonherald.com  |  Columnists

This is one of those pictures that’s worth a thousand words — the four most recent speakers of the Massachusetts House, together, in what you might call . . . a lineup.

From left, in the shades, Sal DiMasi, indicted, about to stand trial on federal charges of accepting $65,000 in bribes.

Beside Sal is ex-Speaker Tom “Felon” Finneran, convicted of obstruction of justice.

Next to Finneran, yet another convicted felon speaker, Good Time Charlie Flaherty. He went down on an income-tax evasion rap.

And finally, the current speaker, Bobby “Slots” DeLeo, the guy whose godson was hired after a nationwide search as the youngest chief probation officer in state history at age 27. Speaker Slots is a high school classmate of Felon Finneran’s — what a coincidence.

This photo was taken by a Lowell Sun photographer last summer at a former state rep’s funeral in Lowell. I offer it today in evidence for the defense in the upcoming trial of United States of America v. Salvatore DiMasi, et al.

Sal’s defense team, which the taxpayers are picking up the tab for, wants to call a bunch of so-called expert witnesses to “explain” how things work on Beacon Hill between lobbyists and solons.

The feds argue that given the evidence against Sal, this is a waste of time. I agree, especially since we have this photo — what more do you need to know about Beacon Hill?

But I’d be happy to appear as a witness. I’d bring in a giant blow-up of the photo and a pointer, which I would use to ID each hack. If there are any blacks on the jury, I’d try to mention that two corrupt black politicians from Boston — Dianne Wilkerson and Chuck “Superfly” Turner — are currently serving hard time, while Flaherty and Finneran didn’t do a day.

Of course Sal’s $125-an-hour attorneys would object, but I’d have planted the seed: The State House — crime and no punishment, unless you’re black. No justice, no peace.

Some might argue that it’s unfair to include DeLeo in this rogue’s gallery, because he hasn’t even been indicted. But in January in the House chambers, DeLeo willingly posed for photos with all of these same sleazy, corrupt mentors of his.

I asked for those photos — I figure they’re public record. But DeLeo stonewalled me. I’ll bet if I were some racetrack tout in a leisure suit talking out of the side of my mouth and smoking a cigar, he’d have given them to me — in frames.

So now I have basically the same photo — better late than never. Speaking of which, Sal, it’s not too late to change your plea to guilty. You’ll make out just fine. You’re a corrupt white guy from Boston.

Article URL: http://www.bostonherald.com/news/columnists/view.bg?articleid=1330858

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