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  • centurion2049 centurion2049 Jan 7, 2006 12:41 PM Flag

    DeEnd for DeFool

    WASHINGTON - Embattled Rep. Tom DeLay decided Saturday to give up his post as House majority leader, clearing the way for new leadership elections among House Republicans eager to shed the taint of scandal, two officials said.

    These officials said DeLay, R-Texas, was preparing a letter informing fellow House Republicans of his decision. These officials spoke on condition of anonymity, saying they did not want to pre-empt the formal announcement.

    DeLay is battling campaign finance charges in Texas and was forced to step aside temporarily as majority leader last fall after he was charged in his home state. He has consistently maintained his innocence and said he intended to resume his leadership post once cleared.

    His about-face came amid growing pressure from fellow Republicans who were concerned about their own political futures in the wake of this week's guilty pleas by lobbyist Jack Abramoff> snip

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    • Dishonesty is the basis of your viewpoint due to the fact that you routinely identify yourself as a conservative, when the appropriate terminology is reactionary. Which is why I routinely put a needle into you. I don't like reactionary's. Never have. You typically sound like one of those "fundamentalist preachers" who predict the end of the world - which they've been predicting for centuries. And are routinely disappointed when it doesn't end.

      You consider politics to be a football game, and like any fan, madly cheer for your team while condemning the other. Yet you don't belong to the team you try to identify with, which has consistently rejected your world view-point, which you ignore in order to try to identify with it.

      You have no balance. Republicans, who were given the power to run the country, have made the mistakes that the Democrats made - yet you pretend that they haven't - and resent it when someone points it out. They've overspent and abused the system to keep power.

    • WASHINGTON, Jan. 17 - House Republican leaders laid out a proposal on Tuesday to rewrite House rules governing lobbying as they moved to contain the political damage from an election-year scandal over undue influence and access afforded to lobbyists.

      Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the Democratic leader, said that having Republicans rewrite House rules governing lobbying was "like asking John Gotti to do what he can to clean up organized crime."
      In the first of a series of competing packages of legislation, Speaker J. Dennis Hastert called for a ban on Congressional travel underwritten by outside groups, tougher restrictions on gifts and favors and the elimination of privileges for lawmakers turned lobbyists in response to three bribery and corruption convictions that have reached into the House. Inquiries related to those criminal acts are continuing.

      Congressional Democrats plan to issue their own overhaul plan Wednesday, and Senate Republicans are preparing one as well in a game of one-upsmanship touched off by guilty pleas to corruption charges by the high-powered lobbyist Jack Abramoff and an associate and a House Republican's admission to taking bribes.

      The House and Senate are responsible for setting the rules that apply to each chamber, but in the past have enacted these types of reforms through a combination of rules changes and legislation to give them the force of law.> snip

    • "I know that reading comprehension isn't your strong point, "

      not when trying to sort out what you add to and/or mix into know what I mean......I guess you could call it your posting style, to weasel out of it.......nonetheless, YOU DO IT REGULARLY. IT'S ONE FACET OF YOUR BASIC DISHONESTY.

    • I know that reading comprehension isn't your strong point, but do you need to be so obvious about it. The 15,584 are the numbers of ear-marked appropriation bills (also called pork), whereas the 35,000 is the number of lobbyists that now occupy Washington. Different paragraphs and different sentences.

      And by the way, the number of lobbysists doubled in five years.

      The date of the Article is January 6, 2006, the investigative reporter for the Republic was Jerry Kammer, and no member of either party has made any attempt to refute the article nor the research.

      So tell me, why did it take over 200 years to get to 17,500 lobbyists, and only five to double that figure?

      If you weren't so blindly partisan - you might actually recognize that the US has a problem. And equally why there's a few people setting around DC these days sweating profusely.

    • "in 2004, there were 15,584"
      "In turn, we now have 35,000"

      20,000 new lobbyists in 12 1/2 months?


      (and I KNOW red;aq made that one begins with his trademark "in turn")

    • Under the headline "Lobbying Scandel: Hired Guns Blast Holes in the System", Jeremy Dowell, Editorial Writer for the Arizona Republic, wrote a scathing article that asked this question:

      "When did citizens of the United States Stop Being Represented by the men and women elected to Congress and when did their true representatives become hired-gun lobbyists like Abramoff?

      He then included these facts in his article. In 1982 there were 12 "earmarked" projects in appropriations. By 1998, there were 2,000 of them worth $10.6 billion, and in 2004, there were 15,584 worth $32.7 billion.

      In turn, we now have 35,000 lobbyists beating down the doors of Congress. It is a mad scramble for financial aid that often by-passess the congressional delegations of the states, relying instead on hired guns to bring home the bacon. The results are seemingly as endless as they are caustic to the concept of representative government. The federal government bloats with bridges to nowhere. Tiny colleges in California become superpowers of government funded research, and, most pernicious of all, lawmarkers start forgetting whom it is they work for.

      This is the scandal.

      And, very likely, it is why some in Congress are sweating these days. Lobbying is a business. Like any business, it cannot grow unless there is a demand, and it will not continue to get money to pay its bills if it isn't successful. And as 15,584 ear-marked projects valued at $32.7 billion clearly demonstrate, it is extraordinarily successful.

      And the other piece of what it takes to be successful, is that it doesn't get a hearing unless it has given money to the right people in Congress - who-ever they happen to be, whether on the committee that will hear your bill, or at the direction of the leadership that will decide if your bill ever gets to a vote on the floor.

      Now we all know these politicians need money to run campaigns? So tell me, is the lobbyist bribing the Congressperson who needs the money, or is the Congressperson extorting money from the lobbyist in return for supporting that bill the lobbyist nees to keep himself employed?

      Where and how do you draw the line.

      Whatever one says, its' eminently clear that the welcome mat has been put out in Washington. Washington, in sum, is for sale, and taxpayer dollars is the currency.

    • Start with the scramble by Republicans to "reform" Congress. Why would they need to reform anything if they didn't have a problem? Right now, the candidates for majority leader are all claiming that they're the best member to separate Republicans from the existing and future scandels, and to reform the Congress. If Delay and Ney weren't perceived to be tainted, why discredit them?

      As far as corruption, do you want individuals or systemic examples?

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