“The decision to back Murtha and Hastings for leadership positions reflects exactly the kind of casual disregard for ethics that led voters to boot Republicans from office just eight days ago.”
After winning solidly, in part on a “get rid of the corruption” platform, a player in Abscam is in position to lead the US House of Representatives.
Cone also points out that lobbyists are predictably flocking to Democrats. This isn’t surprising. Of course the lobbyists are going to be wooing those with the power to make the decisions to spend the money. A big part of so many Republican scandals is the fact that they’ve been in power and all the good offers were made to them. Just like with the Democrats before the 1994 elections.
The Republicans simply had more opportunities to be bought. There were more of them and they were in control. Most of the money was flowing in their direction. Now that the Dems are running the show, the flow is going to be re-routed toward them. And if you think they’re going to be able to ignore it you’re being hopelessly optimistic.
Of course, even the minority party in Congress gets some “perks”. But for some reason we’re just hearing about some it now: Abramoff Reports to Prison Tomorrow; Offers Testimony on Democratic Senators. I can’t figure this out. I’ve been assured and reassured and re-reassured that it was only Republicans who had anything to do with Abramoff.
Meanwhile, the Marines that Rep. Murtha loudly proclaimed had murdered Iraqi civilians “in cold blood” have yet to be charged with anything. And the near-total pull-out of all US troops from Iraq by election day that he predicted last year hasn’t happened, either.
But it’s not like the Democrats are the only ones with the wrong people in prominent positions: Trent Lott returns to Senate leadership. I can’t see how that helps Republicans in any way, shape, or form.
UPDATE: Real Clear Politics:
What irony. One of the left’s main knocks on President Bush over the years is that he’s been too blinded by loyalty and that his administration has suffered from cronyism. Yet here you have the new Speaker of the House, whose drapes haven’t even been measured or hung yet, pulling out all the stops to install an ethically-challenged pal for Majority Leader out of blind loyalty and passing over another perfectly competent member (Jane Harman) out of pure pique to turn over the Chairmanship of the Intelligence Committee to a man who was impeached for taking bribes. Not the most auspicious of beginnings, I’d say.
And Captain’s Quarters has more on Abramoff and the Democrats.
UPDATE 2: Yesterday’s WaPo: In Backing Murtha, Pelosi Draws Fire Her Ethics Vow Is Questioned
Plus more on Lott: