William K. Rashbaum and Al Baker of The New York Times have a deep dive into the ongoing and increasingly complex federal investigation of two fundraisers associated with a non-profit called the Campaign for One New York, which supported the election of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio in 2013. Investigators are apparently trying to figure out whether those fundraisers, a real estate executive named Jona Rechnitz and a consultant Jeremy Reichberg, obtained favorable treatment from de Blasio’s administration in exchange for monetary support of the Democrat’s campaign. The problem, though, is that....nobody seems to know what prompted the investigation in the first place:
Two of the people briefed on the matter suggested that investigators were trying to determine whether Mr. Rechnitz and Mr. Reichberg benefited from some type of favorable municipal action, or the promise of some action, in exchange for their donations, their fund-raising or some other gesture. But the precise allegations under scrutiny by federal prosecutors in Manhattan and agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation are unclear.
This is just one of the investigation’s many ambiguities. Among the other aspects of the case that remain “unclear,” at least according to the Times, are:
- “The precise nature” of Reichberg’s consulting business;
- How, exactly, the investigation managed to ensnare “Norman Seabrook, the head of the union that represents city correction officers, and his close friend, Philip Banks III, then the highest-ranking uniformed official in the Police Department”;
- And “whether the prosecutors and F.B.I. agents working on the case have developed evidence, conclusive or otherwise, of the kind of quid pro quo necessary to prove most corruption crimes in federal court.”
In other words: Nobody has any idea what’s going on. Anything could happen. Stay tuned!