On Wednesday, around 3 o’clock, I was scrolling through Facebook when I noticed a status from Creative Loafing Charlotte which indicated that the mayor of our fair city, Patrick Cannon, was being arrested on charges of theft and bribery. I couldn’t believe it. In Charlotte? In sleepy Charlotte, NC? Where nothing happens? Where we are maligned constantly by national publications for being perceived as boring? Well, guess what: We are now in the ranks with some of the most esteemed, cultured cities of this United States and their histories of corrupt city officials. Washington, DC, New York City, Boston, Los Angeles and the like – they are about that life, and so are we!
“Now, what’s so cool about badly behaving local politicians?” you might ask. Well, for one, they do some pretty hilarious shit. Take, for example, public servant extraordinaire, and Toronto Mayor, Rob Ford. You might know Rob Ford as the crack-smoking idiot who happens to run into cameras and run people over faster than Drake can send out eggplant emojis and winky faces. But I know Rob Ford as the Super Cat of Toronto, the Top Shotta of Ontario. Why, you ask? Because according to this, Rob Ford is the toughest rasklat in all of Canada. Yeah, he might smoke a little bit of crack, but how trill is he? He’s the mayor that America wants to stay in Canada but also one that we deserve, dammit. Plus, we have a history of dealing with this sort of thing.
One of my favorite bad pol throwbacks is that of former Washington, DC mayor Marion Barry. This guy was caught on camera smoking crack with his ex-girlfriend. The best part of all of it was that he had the gall to tell the arresting officers, on videotape, which is admissible in court, that the “bitch set [him] up”. That’s right – Marion Barry was entrapped. The best part is that after Barry was caught smoking in the middle of America’s terrible crack epidemic, he was re-elected.
The details surrounding Patrick Cannon though are even more hilarious if you have been following the story thus far. It’s the tale of a bumbling politician who thinks he is more smooth than he lets on. He is essentially Nick Cannon. He’s not discrete, and he has no tact; he’s just awfully bad at trying to be bad. He allegedly had a transaction within the mayor’s office of downtown Charlotte – even Nick Cannon knows you at least have to do the dirty bidding away from your America’s Got Talent trailer and in a motel so you can pitch a reboot of “Wild’n Out” to ashamed executives. Here are some excerpts from a Charlotte Observer report which details Patrick Cannon’s alleged bribe-taking, involving $40,000 and a trip to Las Vegas:
“Saying that he would’ve helped the undercover agent posing as a real estate investor without a bribe: ‘I’m not one of those Chicago- or Detroit-type folk. … That’s not how I flow.’
Cannon said he looked good ‘in an orange tie, but not in an orange suit’
Cannon, according to the affidavit, looked nervously toward a window and covered the money with a folder. After the agent closed the blinds, Cannon put the money to his ear and started fanning the bills”
The best parts is that Cannon seems to be imitating a Southern version of Maryland State Senator Clay Davis. He thinks he’s a boss because he’s got the cash as well as the access to powerful people within Charlotte. The greatest part about all of this is his confidence with which he thinks that he will always wear the orange tie rather than the orange suit. Now, he is wearing the orange suit, but, sheeeiiiitttt, it’s still up for debate about whether or not he can pull off Clay Davis and skate away.
I know some of you big wigs think that our dopey mayor may have been too easy to catch, but our guy has been doing this since he was a City Councilman. The FBI started investigating only after it received a tip from a whistle blower about the alleged illegal activity in 2010. Eliot Spitzer could have gotten away from it all, but nah. Hell, Marion Barry didn’t even take any bribes – dude was just having a relaxing afternoon until some bitch set him up. Whether or not you like it national press, we are a mid-sized city with your major metropolitan problems, so at least give us that the next time you try to write some bullshit listicle about us.
The full 48-page affidavit, also known as the script for Nick Cannon Political Movie Project, is available here. Enjoy!