T Nation

Serious About Corruption?

Given that concerns of corruption were among the most-cited concerns of voters in the exit polls, it will be interesting to see how Nancy Pelosi handles the chairmanship of the House Intelligence Committee.

Pelosi doesn’t like ranking Democrat Jane Harmon - but Alcee Hastings, the person Pelosi wants to replace Harmon and take the chairmanship, was indicted for taking bribes when he was a federal judge.

This article contains more details:

http://www.tcsdaily.com/article.aspx?id=110906D

Also, did you see that William Jefferson was re-elected? Someone from Louisiana needs to explain that one to me (though note that I realize something was going on there – there were something like 8 candidates, with plurality winner Jefferson nabbing around 20% of the vote…).

[quote]BostonBarrister wrote:
Also, did you see that William Jefferson was re-elected? Someone from Louisiana needs to explain that one to me (though note that I realize something was going on there – there were something like 8 candidates, with plurality winner Jefferson nabbing around 20% of the vote…).[/quote]

Jefferson has already ben stripped of his committee position(s) by the party. If I understand correctly, no charges have been levelled against him yet (I don’t know why) and the party has already taken steps to get rid of him. He won about 30% of the vote in that multi-candidate election (he had the advantage of being the incumbent and he had a big campaign war chest). Now he’ll face the #2 runner up (Louisiana law requires the top 2 vote-getters to square off, if nobody gets over 50% of the vote). The party will organize against Jefferson, they have already endorsed the challenger and she is getting the benefits of the party’s fundraising. You can expect Jefferson will not be serving another term.

This stands in stark contrast to the way the GOP handles their ethical challenges… the way Tom DeLay was pampered and protected, how Randy Cunningham, Bob Ney, Bill Frist, Scooter Libby etc, continued to hold their positions with the Republican party’s full support, despite being under investigation.

Since your article merely speculates that Pelosi will appoint this guy, I’d consider it more fear-mongering (look at all the effort the GOP put into trying to demonize Pelosi, during this election). Pelosi hasn’t even taken the position of Speaker yet, so it’s a little too early for condemnation, isn’t it?

What’s the evidence for the hand-wringing? One newspaper in Hasting’s home town. Don’t believe everything you read. And oh yeah, Pelosi never commented on the rumor, which is a year old, if I read the article correctly. Since commenting yes or no would be counting chickens way before they hatched, I don’t blame her for not commenting.

In other words, it sounds like much ado about nothing, for now.

Well, one thing I am curious about, is whether or not being indicted is similar to being arrested. How related to guilt is it?

Anyway, I do hope they take corruption as seriously as has been suggested. However, that being said, I hope that republicans don’t start raising the specter of corruption all over the place when it isn’t really there. Why does that seem likely to me?

I also hope the Democrats are serious about trying to get reforms in place with respect to lobbyists.

It’s going to be an ugly couple of years. Repubs are in the minority, they can relax a bit and sling some mud back. Come on, we know it’s going to happen.

[quote]Sloth wrote:
It’s going to be an ugly couple of years. Repubs are in the minority, they can relax a bit and sling some mud back. Come on, we know it’s going to happen.[/quote]

Yeah, but the question is will it be earned mud or simple escalation of speculation based on things like FOX?

It’s funny to watch some pundit start speculating and then seeing politicians start saying “it’s been said” or “there are rumors and speculation”. It’s like the purpose of FOX is to legitimize or enable bullshit statements by offering a false foundation.

It’s sad to watch.

Both parties do it. All it will take is one democrat to step out of line, and the whole party will be smeared. I predict grid lock, and a hell of alot of mudslinging back and forth.

One Foleyesque incident, or political favor for money deal, and it’ll be blood in the water.

[quote]Sloth wrote:
One Foleyesque incident, or political favor for money deal, and it’ll be blood in the water.[/quote]

Yeah, those were real, not just speculation built on conjecture and/or fear mongering…

That’s the thing, chances are there’s going to be a rotten apple or two. That’s all it takes.

[quote]Sloth wrote:
That’s the thing, chances are there’s going to be a rotten apple or two. That’s all it takes.[/quote]

Why do you hate America?

[quote]vroom wrote:
Sloth wrote:
One Foleyesque incident, or political favor for money deal, and it’ll be blood in the water.

Yeah, those were real, not just speculation built on conjecture and/or fear mongering…[/quote]

These were real too, but got very little media play before the election – I’ll leave you to speculate as to the reason…

Excerpted from a WSJ news piece today:
[i]
Sen. Harry Reid (D., Nev.), who is expected to be elected to majority leader in the Senate, has come under attack for his relationship with Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff, a profitable land deal, and whether he inappropriately used campaign funds to give Christmas bonuses to employees at his condo complex.

In the House, West Virginia Democratic Rep. Allan Mollohan, whose conduct is being investigated by the Justice Department, is in line for a senior position on the Appropriations Committee. Meanwhile, Rep. Alcee Hastings, a Florida Democrat, is vying to become chairman of the Intelligence Committee. Once a federal judge, Mr. Hastings was impeached by Congress more than a decade ago after he was charged with – and acquitted of – taking a $150,000 bribe. Mr. Hastings declined to comment.

A fourth Democrat, Rep. William Jefferson of Louisiana, under Justice Department investigation for accepting bribes, came out ahead of 12 other candidates vying for his seat on Election Day, but faces a December runoff under Louisiana’s unique election system. A spokeswoman for Mr. Jefferson said he has “consistently said that he is innocent of all the allegations.”

Democrats were successful in exploiting the corruption scandal on the campaign trail. Nearly three of four voters said that “corruption and scandals” in government were extremely important or very important in their votes, according to exit polls.

Indeed, four Republican lawmakers with ties to Mr. Abramoff lost their re-election bids, including Sen. Conrad Burns of Montana and Reps. Richard Pombo of California, J.D. Hayworth of Arizona and John Sweeney of New York.

On the other side of the Capitol, Mr. Mollohan is being investigated by federal prosecutors who are examining his practice of directing federal funds to nonprofit groups he set up in his home state that are run by real-estate partners or political allies.

Some of the groups got grand-jury subpoenas, indicating an active investigation. No charges have been brought and Mr. Mollohan has denied the allegations. He stepped down as ranking Democrat on the House ethics committee earlier this year after his pattern of earmarking became public. The allegations became an issue in his campaign against challenger Christopher Wakim, a Republican state legislator. But Rep. Mollohan won easily, with 64% of the vote to 36% for Mr. Wakim. A spokesman for Mr. Mollohan didn’t return a call or email yesterday.
…[/i]

[quote]Marmadogg wrote:
Sloth wrote:
That’s the thing, chances are there’s going to be a rotten apple or two. That’s all it takes.

Why do you hate America?[/quote]

?

[quote]BostonBarrister wrote:
vroom wrote:
Sloth wrote:
One Foleyesque incident, or political favor for money deal, and it’ll be blood in the water.

Yeah, those were real, not just speculation built on conjecture and/or fear mongering…

These were real too, but got very little media play before the election – I’ll leave you to speculate as to the reason…

Excerpted from a WSJ news piece today:
[i]
Sen. Harry Reid (D., Nev.), who is expected to be elected to majority leader in the Senate, has come under attack for his relationship with Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff, a profitable land deal, and whether he inappropriately used campaign funds to give Christmas bonuses to employees at his condo complex.

In the House, West Virginia Democratic Rep. Allan Mollohan, whose conduct is being investigated by the Justice Department, is in line for a senior position on the Appropriations Committee. Meanwhile, Rep. Alcee Hastings, a Florida Democrat, is vying to become chairman of the Intelligence Committee. Once a federal judge, Mr. Hastings was impeached by Congress more than a decade ago after he was charged with – and acquitted of – taking a $150,000 bribe. Mr. Hastings declined to comment.

A fourth Democrat, Rep. William Jefferson of Louisiana, under Justice Department investigation for accepting bribes, came out ahead of 12 other candidates vying for his seat on Election Day, but faces a December runoff under Louisiana’s unique election system. A spokeswoman for Mr. Jefferson said he has “consistently said that he is innocent of all the allegations.”

Democrats were successful in exploiting the corruption scandal on the campaign trail. Nearly three of four voters said that “corruption and scandals” in government were extremely important or very important in their votes, according to exit polls.

Indeed, four Republican lawmakers with ties to Mr. Abramoff lost their re-election bids, including Sen. Conrad Burns of Montana and Reps. Richard Pombo of California, J.D. Hayworth of Arizona and John Sweeney of New York.

On the other side of the Capitol, Mr. Mollohan is being investigated by federal prosecutors who are examining his practice of directing federal funds to nonprofit groups he set up in his home state that are run by real-estate partners or political allies.

Some of the groups got grand-jury subpoenas, indicating an active investigation. No charges have been brought and Mr. Mollohan has denied the allegations. He stepped down as ranking Democrat on the House ethics committee earlier this year after his pattern of earmarking became public. The allegations became an issue in his campaign against challenger Christopher Wakim, a Republican state legislator. But Rep. Mollohan won easily, with 64% of the vote to 36% for Mr. Wakim. A spokesman for Mr. Mollohan didn’t return a call or email yesterday.
…[/i][/quote]

You didn’t hear about it BB because it’s politics. It just happened to favor the democrats this time instead of the republicans.

BTW, as I posted in another thread, Hastings was acquitted of all bribery charges from that 1989 case. Since he was found not guilty, it shouldn’t have played a part at all.

[quote]Sloth wrote:
Both parties do it. All it will take is one democrat to step out of line, and the whole party will be smeared. I predict grid lock, and a hell of alot of mudslinging back and forth.

One Foleyesque incident, or political favor for money deal, and it’ll be blood in the water.[/quote]

It depends how they handle it. It’s unrealistic to expect there to no scandal among any Democrat politicians. If they renounce and repudiate in a way that wasn’t done with Foley, I think the public would react favorably.

Re: Harry Reid. The reason the Harry Reid/Abramoff thing didn’t stick is because he didn’t take any money from Abramoff. The land deal charge seems to be a technicality related to how he filed his taxes, and not actually illegal. Improper christmas bonuses, give me a break… Randy Cunningham made millions in kickbacks selling defense contracts to the highest bidder.

Mollohan and Jefferson are apparently dirty, and I know Jefferson is heading for a fall, he’s going to lose his seat and if charges are brought then he’ll probably go to jail. I don’t know what’s up with Mollohan.

The Hastings situation is pure speculation, I don’t see the point of flogging the Dems for a hypothetical situation. Except to push a bogus meme that the Democrats are supposed to be just as dirty as the Republicans. That’s a fucking joke!!! The two parties aren’t even close.

Nice try, but you fall way short.

[quote]ALDurr wrote:

BTW, as I posted in another thread, Hastings was acquitted of all bribery charges from that 1989 case. Since he was found not guilty, it shouldn’t have played a part at all.
[/quote]

I’ll grant you the not guilty verdict of course – but the overwhelming impeachment by a Democratic Congress seems to indicate that, if the evidence wasn’t up to criminal standards, he certainly wasn’t exonerated…

[quote]BostonBarrister wrote:
I’ll grant you the not guilty verdict of course – but the overwhelming impeachment by a Democratic Congress seems to indicate that, if the evidence wasn’t up to criminal standards, he certainly wasn’t exonerated…[/quote]

I have some breaking news for you… the election is over. You and H2 should put together a little traveling road show.

Yes, your credibility is starting to fall that low.

[quote]BostonBarrister wrote:
Given that concerns of corruption were among the most-cited concerns of voters in the exit polls, it will be interesting to see how Nancy Pelosi handles the chairmanship of the House Intelligence Committee.

Pelosi doesn’t like ranking Democrat Jane Harmon - but Alcee Hastings, the person Pelosi wants to replace Harmon and take the chairmanship, was indicted for taking bribes when he was a federal judge.

This article contains more details:

http://www.tcsdaily.com/article.aspx?id=110906D

Also, did you see that William Jefferson was re-elected? Someone from Louisiana needs to explain that one to me (though note that I realize something was going on there – there were something like 8 candidates, with plurality winner Jefferson nabbing around 20% of the vote…).[/quote]

She will do nothing except keep the lid on the scandals!