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Posted by Steve Slavin on February 25, 2001 at 16:13:55:

Bill: Hello?

Hugh: Hello, Bill?

Bill: Hi, Hughie, how yuh’all doin’?

Hugh: What can I tell you? Maybe I’ve been living down here in the sunshine state a little too long. Between brother Jeb and that Harris bitch, well it can really turn you off politics. This Florida corruption and nepotism goes way beyond anything I saw growing up around Chicago. Lemme tell you, Bill, Mayor Daley and his family didn’t have nothin’ on the Bushes. I mean, it ain’t what you know – it’s who you know. But don’t let me get started. How’s my sister doin’?

Bill: The senator? She’s excellent. In fact, on her good days, I sometimes think she’s forgotten most of the crap I’ve pulled on her.

Hugh: Glad to hear that. Listen, Bill? I don’t want to take up too much of your time, but I’ve got a couple of names I’d like to add to your list of pardons.

Bill: Sure thing, Hughie. Let me jot them down.
Hugh: OK, first there’s a guy named Glenn Braswell, a small businessman? He got himself in trouble back in 1983 and did some time for money laundering, tax evasion, and mail fraud.

Bill: Got ‘em. And who’s the other one?

Hugh: Carlos Vignali. He’s in jail now for selling cocaine.

Bill: Wow! Tell me something, Hughie, did he inhale?
(They both laugh.)

Hugh: I hope not, because I think he brought in 800 pounds of the stuff.

Bill: Shoot! Yuh know, ahm thinkin’, maybe it’s not such a good idea tuh pardon the guy. ‘Specially considerin’ all the heat ah had tuh take for just a couple a tokes a weed.

Hugh: I see what you mean, Bill. Look, personally, I think the guy got a bum rap. He was a first offender, and face it, anyone can make a mistake. So what I’m gonna do is send you the documentation on both guys. You know, the usual testimonials from some bigwigs. In fact we even got a Cardinal or something from the Catholic church.

Bill: OK, that’ll certainly give me some cover. I mean, didn’t the Pope sell those indulgences? Oh yeah, Hughie, before we get off, I gotta ask you this question. Do you know these guys? Are they personal friends? Because it’ll really look real bad if you’re getting any money for this.

Hugh: I appreciate you’re asking, Bill. No, Braswell and …and…

Bill: Vignali?

Hugh: Whatever. They’re both close personal friends and great guys. And you asked about the money? Sure, they both offered a lot of money, one up front, and the other on a contingency basis. But I’m not taking a penny. I’m doing it because it’s the right thing to do. So we got a deal?

Bill: Sure thing, Hughie. I gotta run now. They’re havin’ a two-fer-one special at McDonald’s.
(They hang up.)

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