|Senator Casey at the Chaka trial/philly.com/David Swanson|
He's a former clothing store magnate and lobbyist who gravitates to politicians the way a groupie chases rock stars.
In the past decade, he's given away more than $100,000 to some of his favorite Democrats. But what he really wanted to do was become a U.S. ambassador.
Herb Vederman, Ed Rendell's former unpaid deputy mayor, was also best buddies with Congressman Chaka Fattah.
Herb and Chaka were so close that for years, Fattah pushed Vederman for an ambassador's post. The congressman went as far as to sign and hand-deliver a letter to President Obama on Oct. 30, 2010, advocating for Vederman's appointment as U.S. Ambassador to anywhere.
But standing in the way of Vederman's lifelong goal was U.S. Senator Bob Casey. The Pennsylvania Democrat made a VIP appearance at the Chaka Fattah trial today to explain how he declined Congressman Fattah's request to support Vederman's candidacy for an ambassadorship in 2008, even though Casey was happy to continue to accept campaign donations from Vederman. Herb was sure disappointed about not getting that ambassadorship, the senator testified, and he expressed that disappointment twice directly to Casey.