Sarah Palin may have pushed the Monica Conyers scandal off the political pages in Detroit for the time being but I’m betting it’s only a matter of time before the Conyers story resurfaces.
In fact, with Sam Riddle Jr. at the center of the Conyers scandal, it’s almost a sure bet. Riddle is the consultant who keeps popping up in the middle of cash and contracts and Conyers, who has plead guilty to corruption charges.
As Riddle’s now ex-wife, Barbara, told me 23 years ago, Riddle has “always been the type of person who just can’t sit back and keep his mouth shut.”
In 1986, when I used that quote from Barbara Riddle in a story about Sam, Riddle was tight with Michael Moore, and both were still mostly famous in Flint, Michigan where Riddle and Moore wrote for an alternative paper and I reported for the Flint Journal.
Moore’s talent was still the nation’s to discover and Sam’s particular specialty was putting himself in the center of a media story. He and Moore once dueled in interviews with me over competing versions of their trip to Nicaragua, with Sam claiming he had been sequestered in a hotel by some dark CIA types. His experience, he said, left him skeptical of the Sandinista government, a politically incorrect view that put him and Moore at odds.
Moore didn’t believe Sam’s CIA story. Neither did I so I didn’t write about it. That may have been one of the few times Sam Riddle hasn’t succeeded at spin.
This time Sam is saying while he’s at the center of the Conyers story, he’s done nothing wrong. For Sam’s sake I hope that’s how the feds end up spinning it.