Whopper of the Week: Billy Bulger.

Gossip, speculation, and scuttlebutt about politics.
June 20 2003 6:15 PM

Whopper of the Week: Billy Bulger

The Massachusetts Senate president omits to tell his fugitive brother to turn himself in, and makes no effort to do it himself.

"I have not aided James Bulger in any way while he has been a fugitive."
Former Massachusetts Senate president and current University of Massachusetts President William "Billy" Bulger, testifying before a House committee June 19 about his on-the-lam mobster brother, James "Whitey" Bulger

"I had one very brief telephone conversation with my brother. It occurred in 1995. … The subject of my brother turning himself in never came up."
Ibid(Note: Bulger was Massachusetts Senate president at the time.)

"Q: OK, your brother broke the law and you were a public official. Did you go to the authorities to say that you had been contacted?
"A: I told my attorney almost right away.
"Q:Did you go to the officials?
"A: No."
Exchange at the same hearing between Rep. Christopher Shays, R.-Conn., and Bulger

Got a whopper? Send it to chatterbox@slate.com. To be considered, an entry must be an unambiguously false statement paired with an unambiguous refutation, and both must be derived from some appropriately reliable public source. Preference will be given to newspapers and other documents that Chatterbox can link to online.

Whopper Archive:
May 30, 2003: Ari Fleischer
May 23, 2003: Donald Rumsfeld
May 19, 2003: Un-Whopper: Ari Fleischer Tells Truth!
May 2, 2003: Peggy Cooper Cafritz
April 17, 2003: Eason Jordan
March 7, 2003: John Kerry
Feb. 28, 2003: Ari Fleischer
Feb. 14, 2003: Bill O'Reilly
Feb. 7, 2003: Saddam Hussein
Jan. 31, 2003: Karl Rove
Jan. 23, 2003: Bill Frist
Jan. 17, 2003: Naji Sabri
Jan. 10, 2003: Rod Paige

(Click here  to access the Whopper Archive for 2002 and here  to access the Whopper Archive for 2001.)

Timothy Noah is a former Slate staffer. His  book about income inequality is The Great Divergence.