David Rivera has a problem with the truth. A big problem. And the Miami Herald has Rivera in its sights.
We've known for some time that GOP Congressional candidate David Rivera (FL-25) was sort of weird and shifty, but the narratives were a little complex and weird. (Rivera ran a delivery truck off the road to prevent his opponent's mailers from getting to the post office? Rivera either was battering a woman or having an unknown doppelganger with the identical name who had a restraining order? Rivera was saying one thing in Spanish, then denying it English? Rivera was accused in an FEC filing of illegal campaign activities?)
But here comes something easy to understand: today's paper reports (Source of Rivera's income unclear) that Rivera has for years been getting money from a secret source that Rivera will not disclose. Yes, the one and only David Rivera in the Florida state legislature has either been lying on his sworn financial disclosure forms, or taking some kind of secret payoff, or both.
See, there's this money he has been saying for seven years that he gets in salary from consulting for the USAID, a federal agency. But the Herald discovered that USAID says it has never heard of him. Oh, says Rivera, I was a subcontractor. But I won't tell you for whom. I didn't mention the subcontractor in my sworn ethics disclosure form because the money originated at USAID (which I'm sure is an ethics violation right there). What, asks the Herald, did you actually do for USAID? I took trips like these, says Rivera, showing receipts of three trips to Mexico and Chile.
And here the Herald does real journalism: it looks into those trips and finds they were funded exchanges by the US State Department, on which Rivera got expenses and $200 per day – not the thousands he lists on his ethics forms. Oh, says Rivera, well those were just examples of what I did. And it goes round and round and round, including the creation of a possibly sham company in Puerto Rico (to launder the money?).
Somewhere in all this I lost track of the number of times the Herald caught Rivera lying, but it's a large number. And don't miss the last few paragraphs of the story, in which the Herald, purely deadpan, presents facts relating to large payments by previous Rivera campaigns, for what seems like not much, to a corporation that had a close relationship with his mother. At least he's a family man.