In what seems to be a hard political right hook to the gut, congressional candidate Richard Tisei is revisiting Congressman John Tierney's wife's legal scandal involving her fugitive brother's illegal gambling business.
“For years, John Tierney’s wife worked for this massive criminal enterprise," Tisei said. "She made tens of thousands of dollars for it. She went to prison for her role. John Tierney should immediately give every single dime of that money to a charity. For them to keep the ‘gifts’ that actually constitute income is dishonest and corrupt.”
Patrice Tierney pleaded guilty in 2010 to helping her brother Robert Eremian manage a Massachusetts bank account into which money from an illegal offshore gambling operation was funneling money.
Tisei, a Republican from Wakefield, is seeking the Sixth Congressional District seat - which includes Hamilton and Wenham - in the U.S. House of Representatives. U.S. Rep. John Tierney, D-Salem, is hoping to hold on to the seat.
This week, after a judge this week ordered Daniel Eremian -- Patrice Tierney's other brother also involved in Robert's criminal activities -- to forfeit $7.7 million of proceeds illegally gained from that venture, Tisei urged Congressman Tierney to forfeit any money or gifts he and his wife may have received from her brother.
“Patrice Tierney, by her own account, worked for her brother and received at least $223,000 in ‘gifts’ for her work in the criminal enterprise," Tisei said. "Every dime of that money should be forfeited by the Tierneys – now.”
The Boston Globe reported that Tierney issued a statement in response expressing outrage and attacking Tisei for attacking family members.
“It is outrageous that Richard has decided to personally attack my wife and to fabricate so many claims against her,” Tierney reportedly said. “Patrice is a grandmother, mother, and aunt who, in caring for her nieces and nephews, made an error in judgment. She accepted full responsibility and has paid the price. Patrice is not running for Congress and she should not be used as Richard Tisei’s personal punching bag.”
In a later statement, after Tierney's reponse, Tisei hit back again, saying the attack was against Tierney himself and not his wife or family.
"My message couldn't be simpler: get rid of that money, John Tierney," Tisei said. "Give it to a charity - maybe Gambler's Anonymous."
This latest round of punches comes at the heels of