Further proof, as if it were needed, that America is not so different from England. Here, too, money may not be able to buy love, but it can buy a different set of legal standards. Here, too, rank hath its privileges.
Dr Ernie Fletcher, Kentucky State Governor, was indicted for his part in the state's recent discriminatory hiring practices scandal on three counts, one of criminal conspiracy, one of official misconduct in the first degree, and one of political discrimination. Fletcher's office, it's alleged, hired, fired and promoted people based upon whether they supported Fletcher or his Democrat rival in the election. State laws make this a crime, as positions within the state government are supposed to decided on merit only. Fletcher maintains that the investigation has been politically motivated (which seems a given, seeing as the crime was politically motivated, but there ya go) and has filed to have the State Attorney General removed from the case, but admits "mistakes were made" by his administration.
In America, after the indictment comes "the arraignment", where the charges are read before a judge, the defendant is formally asked to enter a plea, and either pleads guilty or not guilty and, if necessary, the question of bail is addressed.
Fletcher, however, as of yesterday, still hadn't made up his mind whether he's going to bother turning up to the arraignment hearing because doing so would provide his political opponents with "a dramatic perp walk."
Most normal people are led to their arraignments in handcuffs by burly, armed court officials, and those aren't face contempt of court charges if they don't voluntarily appear.