News Americas, HAMILTON, Bermuda, Tues. May 20, 2014: Bermuda Premier Craig Cannonier on Monday night called it quits after his One Bermuda Alliance was rocked by investigations into his dealing with U.S. businessman and top Democratic fundraiser, Nathan Landow.
Landow is a self-made success who has amassed a fortune in real estate development. He is a major Democratic fundraiser and gained notoriety in the Clinton-Gore years as the person who hired a private investigator to research Kathleen Willey, a Virginia woman who claimed that Clinton had groped her in the White House. He raised $600,000 for Clinton’s two presidential races and was a guest at more than one of Clinton’s White House coffees for big donors. Willey testified in 1996 that that Landow pressured her to lie to investigators about the Clinton groping incident.
Cannonier’s dramatic resignation came after days of party meetings and speculation over his future to lead the British dependent territory and his alleged dealings with Landow. On Friday, the Bermuda Sun reported that Landow admitted that he, along with a group of half-a-dozen real estate developers, builders and entrepreneurs from the greater Washington D.C. area, gave about $300,000 in total to help the OBA’s election campaign in the run-up to the 2012 election.
The money was not wired directly to the OBA campaign, he said. It was wired to a group called the Bermuda Political Action Club. It’s unclear who is behind that organization or how the money was spent, according to the Sun. Landow, however, denies there was any quid pro quo in his dealings with Premier Craig Cannonier.
‘We were told that it was campaign contributions and it was what you might say an underground campaign for getting out the vote,’ the Sun quoted Landow as telling them by phone.
Cannonier’s resignation was confirmed by Governor George Fergusson Monday night.
In a statement, Cannonier made no admission of any guilt, instead stating: “Nothing illegal was done, but I accept there was a failure over time to be completely transparent.”
Deputy Premier, Michael H. Dunkley will now take the helm as Acting Premier on an interim basis, Fergusson said.
Dunkley called the appointment a “bitter sweet” moment and confirmed that the Cabinet and the Senate will remain the same.