Friday, June 23, 2006

Just plain pathetic

I tend not to post about the corruption in the GOP because 1) I have nothing new to add and 2) Nick can usually give better insights based on his, well, close connections. But I just had to take quick note of this gem.

The Abramoff corruption scandal is growing larger and larger, with former White House aide David Safavian found guilty yesterday of obstruction of justice and lying. He's just the most recent one to fall, and the only one so far tied directly to the administration. Right now, everyone has their eye on Rep. Robert Ney (R-Ohio) who was implicated numerous times for taking bribes in Abramoff's indictment as 'Official A'. Everyone knew Official A was Ney, but he denied any illegal activity and publicly announced that he would run for reelection.

Ok, enough back story. Today, the McCain Report on the exploitation of the Tigua tribe came out. But in the case of Rep. Ney, it practically flat-out accuses him of lying. Talking Points Memo has the story:
The committee has numerous witnesses testifying that Ney sat down with representatives from the Texas Tigua tribe, a de facto Abramoff client, for a lengthy meeting -- an hour and a half to two hours... But Ney, in a meeting with Senate investigators, claimed not to be familiar with the Tigua. Never heard of them. He couldn't remember meeting with them. Did he meet with Tigua reps for two hours? No, he "wouldn’t even meet with the President for two hours.”
It gets fun when he explains why there's a discrepancy:
Brian Walsh, a spokesman for Ney, said yesterday that the congressman's meeting with the committee "was a voluntary meeting -- it was not conducted under oath."

The committee report said that those witnesses who were not placed under oath were reminded of "the applicability of the false statements act" and of statutes dealing with obstruction of a congressional investigation. (Washington Post)
So it's ok to lie because he wasn't under oath. Good one.


At 5:12 PM, Blogger Nick said...

As far as I can tell, a lot of the professional prognostication out there has concluded that Ney's standing in his home district has been saved by the lack of an indictment, and left relatively unharmed by less tangible signs of corruption like giant reports from the Senate Indian Affairs Committee which, as you mention, seem to contradict his previous Congressional testimony. I don't know whether this is a function of voter apathy or of a lack of coverage of the more salacious parts of the scandal by Ohio media (for example, Bob Ney taking money in exchange for inserting praise of a Florida casino boat into the Congressional record), but I for one was a bit surprised to find out that Ney hasn't been written off yet.


Post a Comment

<< Home