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> Sigh, another corrupt Rep Congresscritter ...
Bikerdad
post May 12 2006, 10:23 PM
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Chairman of Congressional Black Caucus knee deep in bribery scandal.

Hah! "Rep", as in Representative, not "Rep" as in Republican. tongue.gif

Now, the interesting aspect of this pretty much "run of the mill" Congressional corruption story is how little coverage its gotten. With all the clang and clamor over Abramoff and the San Diego fella, you'd think maybe this guy would get some press as well. Not....

Okay, so the questions for debate are two:

1) How much, if anything, have you heard about this scandal before, and from what media sources?

2) What accounts for the apparent paucity of coverage?

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Vermillion
post May 12 2006, 10:46 PM
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QUOTE(Bikerdad @ May 12 2006, 10:23 PM)
Now, the interesting aspect of this pretty much "run of the mill" Congressional corruption story is how little coverage its gotten.  With all the clang and clamor over Abramoff and the San Diego fella, you'd think maybe this guy would get some press as well.  Not....


Well if thats the 'interesting thing; about this case, then its not very interesting. I've certainly read about it before, its not like its been hidden on the back page below 'contract bridge' by all those dastardly lefty/pinko newspapers...

So, another corruption story, and the man pleaded guilty, and he will be punished for it. How does that in any way detract from the other scandals we have seen? What point exactly are you trying to make?
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Lesly
post May 12 2006, 11:22 PM
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How much, if anything, have you heard about this scandal before, and from what media sources?
Not much. Certainly not on Think Progress, which I think is just a disservice to everyone who uses that site. I think I saw a lead up on CNN a few weeks ago.

What accounts for the apparent paucity of coverage?
In spite of the straing corporate interests places on journalistic integrity, pinko Reds still control the media strings.

Actually, I ask myself this same question about several stories throughout the year. I just never ask it on ad.gif. Here's a guess: it's not as sexy as other congressional scandals. I mean it literally.
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BoF
post May 12 2006, 11:23 PM
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This has been covered on Hardball. Perhaps you are tuning in the wrong media, or maybe you just drifted off in the recliner and slept through coverage.

QUOTE
Democratic Congressman Bill Jefferson is facing potential bribery allegations in a case involving a witness who secretly taped their conversations.  And former White House domestic policy adviser Claude Allen is facing a trial in June for charges relating to shoplifting.


Hardball Transcript

In fact, this thread makes me want to take a nap. sleeping.gif

This post has been edited by BoF: May 12 2006, 11:32 PM
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CruisingRam
post May 13 2006, 12:02 AM
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QUOTE(Bikerdad @ May 12 2006, 01:23 PM)
Chairman of Congressional Black Caucus knee deep in bribery scandal.

Hah!  "Rep", as in Representative, not "Rep" as in Republican.  tongue.gif

Now, the interesting aspect of this pretty much "run of the mill" Congressional corruption story is how little coverage its gotten.  With all the clang and clamor over Abramoff and the San Diego fella, you'd think maybe this guy would get some press as well.  Not....

Okay, so the questions for debate are two:

1) How much, if anything, have you heard about this scandal before, and from what media sources?

2) What accounts for the apparent paucity of coverage?
*




How about the fact that it is all but over, and no follow up story other than jail, and it doesn't involve lying over the deaths of thousands of Americans- can I get a loud "duh"?
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quarkhead
post May 13 2006, 12:05 AM
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QUOTE(Bikerdad @ May 12 2006, 02:23 PM)
Chairman of Congressional Black Caucus knee deep in bribery scandal.

Hah!  "Rep", as in Representative, not "Rep" as in Republican.  tongue.gif

Now, the interesting aspect of this pretty much "run of the mill" Congressional corruption story is how little coverage its gotten.  With all the clang and clamor over Abramoff and the San Diego fella, you'd think maybe this guy would get some press as well.  Not....

Okay, so the questions for debate are two:

1) How much, if anything, have you heard about this scandal before, and from what media sources?

2) What accounts for the apparent paucity of coverage?
*



1. Well, let's see. Last weekend, Daniel Schorr talked about it on NPR's weekend edition. I also saw it on Working For Change, a pretty liberal site. Oh, and of course, The Washington Post...

2. First, there's not a 'paucity of coverage' about this. Of course there is relatively less press about it than with the DeLay case or the others - after all, DeLay is a more prominent Congressman, and the Abramoff scandal is much more widespread. Jefferson's corruption is typical - a Congressman doing favors for a crony.

The K-street mess is much worse, because it's exposing the fact that Republicans in Congress have corrupted the entire lobbying industry. This (Republican-led) Congress will quite possibly be considered one of the most corrupt in our history. Of course, as it is with politicians, noone has clean hands entirely.

There is always hypocrisy when it comes to partisan politics. Republicans condemn other countries for abusing human rights, yet make jokes about 'fraternity-type pranks' when it comes to abuses by the US. People don't tend to offer up as much criticism for their own 'side.' It's just the way most people work. Look at the reaction so many on the right have when us 'lefties' criticize US policies. We hate America! We're always running America down! Why can't we focus on the wrongs of others? But it's the same principle. So you're trying to pull a "gotcha" here, but it falls flat on every level. You seem to assume there is a widespread liberal bias in the media, but there isn't - there are other reasons this scandal has gotten less attention than others. When the Democrats were in the white house, the same media was focusing on Clinton, and less on Republican scandals.

Mainly, it's no revelation that people in general are less likely to criticize or castigate the people on their own team, rather than the people on the other team. Most players don't yell at the ref for not spotting a foul their teammate committed. mrsparkle.gif
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nighttimer
post May 13 2006, 05:53 AM
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QUOTE(Bikerdad @ May 12 2006, 06:23 PM)
1) How much, if anything, have you heard about this scandal before, and from what media sources?

2) What accounts for the apparent paucity of coverage?
*



First let's dispense with your highly misleading "headline," Bikerdad. Rep. William L. Jefferson is a member of the Congressional Black Caucus. He is not the chairman. Representative James Clyburn is.

The blogger you quote, Jim Kouri, went to the trouble of putting the quotation marks around "Chairman" to avoid confusion. Perhaps you could have done likewise?

Now on to your questions.

1. I've read about the Jefferson story on the Working for Change website. They are also circulating a letter calling for him to resign from Congress (along with Republican Representatives Bob Ney, John Doolittle and Senator Conrad Burns.)

2. With all the Republican greedheads piggishly feeding at the troth, there isn't much attention to be paid to one or two Democratic politicians on the make. Probably because the only African-American Congressperson that Fox News and the right-wing media have paid any attention to recently was Cynthia McKinney when she swung on a Capitol Hill cop. Maybe the fact that Rep. Jefferson hasn't actually been indicted yet is a contributing factor in the "paucity of coverage."

So until there's an indictment handed down, Rep. Jefferson is just another Congressman "under investigation." Compared to a big-timer like Randy "Duke" Cunningham, Jefferson and his $400,000 is small potatoes. It's the GOP who know how to shake 'em on down.

Like this guy:

The Justice Department has begun investigating the activities of Rep. Jerry Lewis (R-Calif.), chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, focusing in part on his dealings with a lobbying firm that hired some of his former staff members, sources familiar with the inquiry said.

One source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the investigation, said subpoenas have been issued by the U.S. Attorney's Office in Los Angeles.


http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/conte...6051101881.html

At the end of the day, Bikerdad it's the majority party that's most subject to getting caught with their hands in the till because they ARE the majority party and that's whose palms have to be greased to get things done.

Same as it ever was. money.gif money.gif money.gif
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Ted
post May 17 2006, 04:35 PM
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QUOTE
1) How much, if anything, have you heard about this scandal before, and from what media sources?

None. You would never expect to hear any of this story on the traditional left biased media esp. NPR and their very biased affiliate


QUOTE
2) What accounts for the apparent paucity of coverage?



The fact that he is a member of the “Black Caucus” makes it even less “interesting” to the media in general. Certainly some in the media fear the “Caucus” and we can be sure lefties like Jesse J would pounce on anyone who even tried to play this story up.
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Lesly
post May 17 2006, 04:49 PM
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QUOTE(Ted @ May 17 2006, 12:35 PM)
QUOTE
How much, if anything, have you heard about this scandal before, and from what media sources?

None. You would never expect to hear any of this story on the traditional left biased media esp. NPR and their very biased affiliate
*

Maybe you should get a new bias, Ted, work up the gumption to call us liars, or consider an employment opportunity with Colbert as his sidekick. Quark says he heard about it on NPR, a liberal site, and WaPo.
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BoF
post May 17 2006, 04:59 PM
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QUOTE(Lesly @ May 17 2006, 11:49 AM)
QUOTE(Ted @ May 17 2006, 12:35 PM)
QUOTE
How much, if anything, have you heard about this scandal before, and from what media sources?

None. You would never expect to hear any of this story on the traditional left biased media esp. NPR and their very biased affiliate
*

Maybe you should get a new bias, Ted, work up the gumption to call us liars, or consider an employment opportunity with Colbert as his sidekick. Quark says he heard about it on NPR, a liberal site, and WaPo.
*



Ted,

Nighttimer, Quarkhead and I all provided sources for this story that appeared in the mainstream media. Were have you been?
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Ted
post May 17 2006, 05:06 PM
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QUOTE(Lesly @ May 17 2006, 12:49 PM)
QUOTE(Ted @ May 17 2006, 12:35 PM)
QUOTE
How much, if anything, have you heard about this scandal before, and from what media sources?

None. You would never expect to hear any of this story on the traditional left biased media esp. NPR and their very biased affiliate
*

Maybe you should get a new bias, Ted, work up the gumption to call us liars, or consider an employment opportunity with Colbert as his sidekick. Quark says he heard about it on NPR, a liberal site, and WaPo.
*




Funny I listen to NPR and hear the “Jack” story nearly evey day and never heard this one. And we all know “Dan” is as liberal as they come so if he did mention it it was a very brief comment. In Boston we have WBUR which is one of the most liberal biased stations in the nation and I have never heard the story there.

How about ABC, NBC, CNN. Any big plays there? Front page news? Or page 10.? Repeat coverage or one stroy? Bias plain and simple.

This post has been edited by Ted: May 17 2006, 05:09 PM
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BoF
post May 17 2006, 05:29 PM
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QUOTE(Ted @ May 17 2006, 12:06 PM)
How about ABC, NBC, CNN.  Any big plays there?   Front page news?  Or page 10.? Repeat coverage or one stroy?  Bias plain and simple.


This might be a good research project for you, Ted.

Just to get you started, I'll point out that the Washington Post story was in section A, on page 1.

QUOTE
By Allan Lengel
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, May 4, 2006; Page A01


http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/conte...6050301055.html

Now that's really burying the story. rolleyes.gif

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TedN5
post May 17 2006, 05:45 PM
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This is just another attempt to characterize the media as biased toward Republicans when the opposite is so clearly true. Progressive websites have covered this issue for several months. Others have pointed out several instances of this coverage. Truthout.org included it in a discussion of congressional corruption last year. The article has apparently be dropped from their website but is preserved here in this Googlle cache:

QUOTE
The Republican Money Machine: The Hammer FallsDemocratic politicians, like Rep. William Jefferson, of Louisiana, and Rep. Maxine Waters, of California, also face their own ethical scandals. ...
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Lesly
post May 17 2006, 05:47 PM
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QUOTE(Ted @ May 17 2006, 01:06 PM)
How about ABC, NBC, CNN. Any big plays there? Front page news? Or page 10? Repeat coverage or one stroy? Bias plain and simple.
*

CNN took note on May 4th and May 16. That kind of "bias" is called framing through selection, emphasis, exclusion, and elaboration. Every American news outlet does it, including jingo outlets you like to believe don't operate with the desire to transfer salience for conservative audiences and reinforcing that salience to maintain ratings/profits.

This post has been edited by Lesly: May 17 2006, 06:10 PM
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Vermillion
post May 17 2006, 05:58 PM
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QUOTE(Ted @ May 17 2006, 05:06 PM)
Funny I listen to NPR and hear the “Jack” story nearly evey day and never heard this one.  And we all know “Dan” is as liberal as they come so if he did mention it it was a very brief comment.  In Boston we have WBUR which is one of the most liberal biased stations in the nation and I have never heard the story there.

How about ABC, NBC, CNN.  Any big plays there?  Front page news?  Or page 10.? Repeat coverage or one stroy?  Bias plain and simple.


Ted, you're just straight up, plain and simple wrong here. Everyone is telling you the same thing, this received quite wide media coverage, as wide as it deserved.

A minute on Google will give you multiple Washington post articles, FOXnews articles, ABC reporting, several MSNBC stories, and dozens of smaller newpapers and outlets taking it off the wire.

If you wish to continue to insist 'total paucity' of coverage, then it just becames clear that the problem here is not with the media, but with Ted.
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Amlord
post May 17 2006, 06:03 PM
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QUOTE(BoF @ May 12 2006, 07:23 PM)
This has been covered on Hardball. Perhaps you are tuning in the wrong media, or maybe you just drifted off in the recliner and slept through coverage.


I don't know if mentioning it (among a slew of Republicans) counts as "coverage".

QUOTE(quarkhead @ May 12 2006, 08:05 PM)
QUOTE(Bikerdad @ May 12 2006, 02:23 PM)
Chairman of Congressional Black Caucus knee deep in bribery scandal.

Hah!  "Rep", as in Representative, not "Rep" as in Republican.   tongue.gif

Now, the interesting aspect of this pretty much "run of the mill" Congressional corruption story is how little coverage its gotten.  With all the clang and clamor over Abramoff and the San Diego fella, you'd think maybe this guy would get some press as well.  Not....

Okay, so the questions for debate are two:

1) How much, if anything, have you heard about this scandal before, and from what media sources?

2) What accounts for the apparent paucity of coverage?
*



1. Well, let's see. Last weekend, Daniel Schorr talked about it on NPR's weekend edition. I also saw it on Working For Change, a pretty liberal site.

I cannot vouch for NPR since I did not hear it (on the Weekend edition).

Jefferson is mentioned on Working for Change after "Duke" Cunningham, Kyle Foggo, Bob Ney and Conrad Burns, even though he may have received more money than all the rest put together ($400,000) outside of Cunningham and his were straight up bribes, not campaign donations or perks. The man (Jefferson) had $90,000 in cash in a freezer in his office!

QUOTE(quarkhead @ May 12 2006, 08:05 PM)
Oh, and of course, The Washington Post...


Well, at least there is a story there. It's subheadline is "Probe of La. Democrat Provides Fodder for GOP"--glossing over the fact that this is at least as bad as any scandal on the Republican side outside of Cunningham.

QUOTE(quarkhead @ May 12 2006, 08:05 PM)
2. First, there's not a 'paucity of coverage' about this. Of course there is relatively less press about it than with the DeLay case or the others - after all, DeLay is a more prominent Congressman, and the Abramoff scandal is much more widespread. Jefferson's corruption is typical - a Congressman doing favors for a crony.


It's typical to get $400,000 in cash? I'd like to see other examples of this "typical" behavior (outside of Cunningham who is obviously a scumbag).

QUOTE(nighttimer @ May 13 2006, 01:53 AM)
First let's dispense with your highly misleading "headline," Bikerdad.  Rep. William L. Jefferson is a member of the Congressional Black Caucus.  He is not the chairman.  Representative James Clyburn is.

The blogger you quote, Jim Kouri, went to the trouble of putting the quotation marks around "Chairman" to avoid confusion.  Perhaps you could have done likewise?


Well, Representative Jefferson was the Chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation (CBCF). Announcement by Jefferson in 2001 At least he claimed to be (I couldn't find anything going back to 2001 on the CBCF's website, but he was certainly not President in 2003). So that news is old, but perhaps not incorrect.

Now he's apparently much less important there, relegated to the "Partners and Sponsors" page: link.

QUOTE(nighttimer @ May 13 2006, 01:53 AM)
Now on to your questions. 

1.  I've read about the Jefferson story on the Working for Change website.  They are also circulating a letter calling for him to resign from Congress (along with Republican Representatives Bob Ney, John Doolittle and Senator Conrad Burns.)

2. With all the Republican greedheads piggishly feeding at the troth, there isn't much attention to be paid to one or two Democratic politicians on the make.  Probably because the only African-American Congressperson that Fox News and the right-wing media have paid any attention to recently was Cynthia McKinney when she swung on a Capitol Hill cop.  Maybe the fact that Rep. Jefferson hasn't actually been indicted yet is a contributing factor in the "paucity of coverage."

So until there's an indictment handed down, Rep. Jefferson is just another Congressman "under investigation."  Compared to a big-timer like Randy "Duke" Cunningham, Jefferson and his $400,000 is small potatoes.  It's the GOP who know how to shake 'em on down.


Right. Got it. Both Brett Pfeffer and Vernon Jackson pled guilty to bribing Jefferson, but it's still up in the air if the Congressman actually is guilty of receiving it. Do I have that straight?

I agree that compared to Cunningham, Jefferson is smaller in scale. He is not smaller in guilt, however. He is definitely small potatoes when it comes to media coverage however.

It should not matter what party these crooks belong to. These cases should all merit equal air time.
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Lesly
post May 18 2006, 04:14 AM
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The good news. The congressional ethics panel will launch investigation into three, count them, three congressmen.

QUOTE(WaPo)
After 16 months of inactivity and partisan infighting, the House ethics committee launched investigations last night into bribery allegations against Reps. Robert W. Ney (R-Ohio) and William Jefferson (D-La.) and a separate inquiry into the widening scandal surrounding former congressman Randy "Duke" Cunningham (R-Calif.).

The committee said it would have ordered another investigation, into the overseas trips of former House majority leader Tom DeLay (R-Tex.), had the once-powerful lawmaker not announced that he will resign from the House on June 9.

- Ethics Panel Starts Three Probes

The really good news? It's on the "front page" of WaPo's online site.

And the bad news?

QUOTE(Amlord @ May 17 2006, 02:03 PM)
It should not matter what party these crooks belong to.
*

It took a Democratic congressman to break the logjam in the ethics panel.

This post has been edited by Lesly: May 18 2006, 04:16 AM
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Amlord
post May 19 2006, 01:27 PM
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QUOTE(Lesly @ May 18 2006, 12:14 AM)
And the bad news?

QUOTE(Amlord @ May 17 2006, 02:03 PM)
It should not matter what party these crooks belong to.
*

It took a Democratic congressman to break the logjam in the ethics panel.
*


I'm not sure what you mean here.

Ranking Democrat Alan B. Mollohan left the panel after it was discovered he has his own ethics problems. He was replaced with Howard L. Berman and now the investigations are moving forward.

Berman is breaking the "logjam" which was caused by Mollohan, a Democrat.

So it did take a Democrat to break the Democrat-created logjam.

This is a positive development, all in all, and hopefully will clear out some of the dead wood in Congress--from both parties.
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Sleeper
post May 21 2006, 09:25 PM
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An update:

It looks as though Jefferson was caught on tape taking a $100,000 bribe..

Source

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Lesly
post May 22 2006, 05:28 PM
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QUOTE(Amlord @ May 19 2006, 09:27 AM)
QUOTE(Lesly @ May 18 2006, 12:14 AM)
And the bad news?

QUOTE(Amlord @ May 17 2006, 02:03 PM)
It should not matter what party these crooks belong to.
*

It took a Democratic congressman to break the logjam in the ethics panel.
*

Ranking Democrat Alan B. Mollohan left the panel after it was discovered he has his own ethics problems. He was replaced with Howard L. Berman and now the investigations are moving forward.

Berman is breaking the "logjam" which was caused by Mollohan, a Democrat.

So it did take a Democrat to break the Democrat-created logjam.
*

Kudos reframing history. It is as good a device as fingering Murtha for the Pentagon’s failure to plan for reconstruction.

It took a Democratic scandal to break a Republican logjam, you mean. Following the 2004 presidential and congressional elections the GOP "proposed changing their rules ... to allow members indicted by state grand juries to remain in a leadership post" on behalf of DeLay. (Link) A few weeks after the GOP proposed making two changes DeLay asked his fellow congressmen to reverse course. The House allowed the rule stripping Republicans of leadership posts when indicted to stand, but went ahead and changed procedures for investigating members. When ethics committee members voted along party lines an investigation would automatically begin 45 days after the vote. The new rule requires a majority to vote in favor of an investigation for one to take place. Democrats refused to join Republicans in accommodating DeLay and walked away from committee meetings.

Mollohan stepped down as he should have. However, the 109th Republican Congress amended procedures to the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct when they decided a majority vote was necessary to begin an ethics investigation. I’m afraid blaming Mollohan for the face-saving measure Republicans adopted takes a greater imagination than I possess, especially when you consider the fact that Mollohan would've been investigated with or without his vote had the rules stayed the same. Thanks to Jefferson House GOP members can broach the idea of investigating one of their own.

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