A Violent Illegal Mayor Against Guns

It seems like there are many criminal members of Michael Bloomberg’s Mayors Against Illegal Guns coalition who lobby Congress and the White House for more restrictions on law-abiding gun owners as a supposed solution to crime in their cities.

A reader noticed the other day that a new mayor in Pennsylvania was recruited into the ranks, one with a history of violently assaulting women and police officers. In fact, local police have publicly opposed his involvement in public office because of his assault that left one officer with a permanent disability.

All of this information was available for Bloomberg’s MAIG recruiters to find well before they signed up Mayor Vaughn D. Spencer and touted his name & photo on their website, as evidenced by this article from the Reading Eagle in January of 2000.

At the time, Berks County District Attorney Mark C. Baldwin filed suit to have Spencer removed from a City Council appointment because the assault made him legally unfit to hold public office. Here’s the relevant part of the story about the multiple violent attacks for which Spencer was accused and convicted:

In April 1986, police said, Spencer went to a home in the 900 block of the North Ninth Street and punched and kicked Carol Ann Parker, breaking her shoulder. Then-Patrolman Charlie Kaucher responded, and Spencer punched him and threw him from a porch, police said.

In October 1987, Spencer pleaded guilty in county court to aggravated assault on Kaucher, a first-degree misdemeanor, and was sentenced to five years of probation.

Nine other charges were dismissed in exchange for the plea, records show.

Kaucher suffered head and other injuries and was left with permanent hearing loss.

I think it’s time for Bloomberg to start answering some questions about his priorities with this coalition of mayors – upwards of 30 of which have been under criminal investigation or convicted of various crimes – now that they have recruited a mayor with a violent criminal record, are they going to put politics before principle?

In recent months, MAIG scrubs any mayor arrested after they signed up for the coalition from their site, but this is a completely new case where the crimes were documented before Bloomberg promoted Spencer’s membership. More importantly, Reading, as a larger city in Pennsylvania, has been a source of political capital for Bloomberg’s coalition. Is he willing to kick out a mayor of a major Pennsylvania city for a history of assaulting police officers, or is the political connection too important for him to keep so that he overlooks the conviction?

In fact, given the rate at which mayors appear to commit crimes, it’s a reasonable question as to whether or not Bloomberg will take the ultimate stand against criminal behavior and actually mandate background checks on members before they sign up with MAIG. It would be an interesting challenge to see if Bloomberg would have the nerve to actually mandate that mayors must be legally eligible to own a firearm before they can join. His numbers would likely see a very sharp drop.