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ICYMI: Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh Steps Down Amid Children's Book Sales Scandal, And Folks Have PLENTY To Say About It

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Baltimore mayor Catherine Pugh has resigned as pressure mounts amid an investigation over the sales of her children's book. And folks have plenty to say about it. More inside...

Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh has resigned as pressure had been building up amid a growing scandal over her sales of a self-published children's book series. Her resignation comes a week after two of her homes and City Hall offices were raided by the FBI and IRS agents.

She announced her resignation via her attorney Steven Silverman where she apologized for the harm she caused to the city's image. Her attorney read her letter of resignation during a news conference at his offices in downtown Baltimore. Mayor Pugh was not in attendance.

"Dear citizens of Baltimore, I would like to thank you for allowing me to serve as the fiftieth mayor. It has been an honor and a privilege," the statement read by her lawyer said. "Today I am submitting my written resignation to the Baltimore City Council."

"I am sorry for the harm that I have caused to the image of the city of Baltimore and the credibility of the office of the mayor," Pugh's statement continued. "Baltimore deserves a mayor who can move our great city forward."

The city is currently being run by acting Mayor Bernard "Jack" Young.

Before resigning, the Democratic mayor had taken a leave of absence amid the children's book scandal. Her lawyer said she was "ill" and that she was hospitalized for five days in late March, which stemmed from a bout of pneumonia.

Folks had been lighting Mayor Pugh up with calls for her to resign over the scandal. Last month, Baltimore's city council called for her to resign as well.

Pugh is under investigation for alleged "self-dealing" in connection to the sale of thousands of copies of a self-published children's book series. Many of those sales went to entities that she had influence over or that sought to do business with the city.

Pugh - who took office in 2016 - reportedly sold $500,000 worth of the books to the $4 billion hospital network over the years, and meanwhile pushed legislation that would have benefited the regional system, according to the Associated Press.

Not only that, Pugh reportedly received about $114,000 from Kaiser Permanente for some 20,000 books from 2015 to 2018, according to the health care provider. Kaiser Permanente said it sent the books to back-to-school fairs, elementary schools, communities of faith and early childhood education and care centers. Associated Black Charities - a public foundation that works to encourage healthier and more prosperous communities - reportedly spent spent $80,000 to purchase about 10,000 copies of Pugh's books between 2011 and 2016.

Pugh has yet to be charged with anything as the investigation is still ongoing.

Baltimore has seen two mayors resign due to scandal in less than a decade. A third one reportedly declined to seek another term after a riot over police misconduct and a rising murder rate.

 

It's interesting, this "scandal" pales in comparison to what current US President Trump has done and gotten away with both before taking office and during. And that's not lost on the masses.

EXTRAS:

1. Jussie Smollett was spotting eating pizza with his lawyer in NYC. STORY

2. The feds are searching for more sex tapes that allegedly features R. Kelly in human trafficking probe. STORY

Photo: Getty

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