Dean and Adam Skelos were up to their knees in their own slime when Al D’Amato tried to throw them both a lifeline.
They refused. Now the slime is up to their chins, and rising fast.
Glug, glug, glug.
D’Amato’s low-key and brief appearance in the witness box at the double trial Friday was quietly devastating to the Skelosi not because of what was said but because of who it was coming from.
D’Amato is the Grand Old Man of the Grand Old Party in New York, the last man from the Empire State to serve the party in the US Senate.
If his matter-of-fact testimony helps reinforce the prosecution’s (already overwhelming) case, then the only hope left to the Skeloses is that maybe they will get to be bunkies at whatever federal penitentiary is their next address.
Former Sen. Alfonse D’Amato’s intercession was a last-ditch effort by the medical-malpractice insurance outfit PRI (which employed D’Amato as a lobbyist) to get some work out of Adam Skelos, whom PRI paid $1,500 a week in what the firm believed was a real job.
Adam was supposed to be an apprentice — learn the ropes, go on calls, study up and pass the test that’s required to get a license selling insurance.
The only part of the job that interested Adam, though, was cashing checks.
That made his father’s angry demands to PRI owner Anthony Bonomo to “work it out” look a lot like extortion. Bonomo was, like D’Amato, a longtime pal of Dean Skelos. Yet he was terrified to cross Dean due to the many legislative issues involving the company that Skelos could block without lifting a finger.
D’Amato — so legendary for his constituent service that he was known as “Sen. Pothole” — tried to make nice with Dean Skelos. Being a senior statesman, he could talk to him as a colleague instead of cowering before him.
But Dean insisted that his son “really needed the job,” though Adam was hauling in a six-figure income.
In other words, go take a flying leap at a pothole.
It’s not just polite to listen to your friends. Sometimes taking a word of advice could actually keep you out of prison.
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