Friday, October 10, 2014

Drip . . . Drip . . . Drip: "I Did Not Personally Travel Or Recruit Investors"--Mike Rounds Regarding The EB-5 Program

     Rounds said that to Bob Mercer a week ago.  It was an answer to one of a series of questions that Mercer had posed regarding Rounds' involvement in the scandal-riddled "cash for green cards" program commonly known as EB-5.  So come today, Mercer produces this letter on his blog Pure Pierre Politics.  Governor Rounds' 2005 missive is a pitch for EB-5 investors to plunk some money down on a South Dakota dairy operation.    If this isn't "recruiting investors," what is?  Rounds keeps portraying himself as detached from the EB-5 fiasco, blaming its troubles on others, yet facts keep pulling him right back into the sorry mess.
     On top of Mercer's revelation, Cory Heidelberger over at Madville Times just came up with another doozy.  Rounds' Department of Agriculture sent a letter in '07 to the U.S Citizenship and Immigration Services supporting the visa application of one of the bag-holding EB-5 investors in the doomed slaughterhouse in Aberdeen.  The Governor (Rounds) and his "value added agriculture" obsession is invoked by the official who sent the letter off.  Rounds claimed in the Mercer interview I linked above that he was "not involved in the transactional details" of the EB-5 program, but the letter makes it plenty clear that Rounds was the instigating force in securing this investor's visa, mainly by citing its importance to Rounds' pet program. If one of his underlings invoked the Governor's office in a letter backing a lone individual's application to a major federal agency without Rounds knowing about the "transaction," then Rounds is indeed the lousy manager his refusal to accept responsibility makes him out to be.
     It's getting to the point now, as Cory H. notes in the link above, that everybody in Pierre was involved in the EB-5 program except Mike Rounds, to hear the former governor and present-day senate candidate tell it.  Too bad for him there's an ever-growing pile of documents that say otherwise.

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