(CNS): A straw poll posted by CNS on Friday found that 64% of readers who took part want Speaker of the Legislative Assembly McKeeva Bush to resign immediately, following his embarrassing arrest in Florida for allegedly groping a casino waitress. Almost 62% of those who said he should resign at some point (now, if he is charged or found guilty) said he should give up his seat as the representative for West Bay West as well as his prestigious and lucrative job as speaker.
Bush has continued to denied any wrongdoing and has insisted he will be completely exonerated. However, his accuser made a sworn affidavit to police in Broward county, stating that Bush groped her buttocks against her will in the casino where she worked. Police said they had viewed CCTV footage supporting the allegation before they arrested Bush.
Cayman’s speaker spent just one night in the county jail before being released on a $1,000 bond with no conditions. The incident took place on the 17 July and the Seminole police department has just 12 days lefts left to decide if the case will proceed or not.
While the premier has remained silent on the issue and refused to comment on the arrest of his former political foe turned coalition partner, the opposition has called on the government to deal with Bush and the embarrassing attention his arrest attracted. CNS readers are also making it clear they want Bush to step away from the political scene.
Hundreds of comments posted on this website over the last week since the story broke indicate that many people do not believe Bush is fit to remain in such a prestigious post. Over the last four days more than 850 people voted in the online poll and 64% said he should resign regardless of the outcome; another 29% said he should step down if he is charged or found guilty. However, just over 7% of readers remained staunchly loyal to the CDP leader and political veteran, voting that he should never resign.
Most of those who took part also called for him to give up his constituency seat as well as the speaker’s post, while 37% felt he should remain as the WBW representative.
While the accusation that Bush committed an indecency related offence has caused public concern, many CNS readers have also raised the issue of Bush’s persistent gambling. His use of a government credit card in casinos while he was premier in 2010 led to his eventual removal from office and charges of misconduct.
Although Bush was acquitted of all charges, as it became clear there was no law against public servants using government supplied credit cards provided they paid back what they spent, the case revealed that Bush was a regular player of slot machines. It also revealed that he had spent many hundreds of thousands of dollars gambling during his first year in office as premier.