Friday, February 27, 2009

NO NEED FOR INVESTIGATION

"No comment"
-Representative Murtha

The PMA group, a lobbying firm that is at least as corrupt as the Abramoff lobby group that so damaged Republicans in the 2006 election, is being investgated by the justice department. It seems that, among other things, it sent election campaign money to congressmen through names of people that did not exist. Jack Murtha (D-PA) in particular has close ties to the company, along with other democratic legislators. The hypocrisy of the Obama administration investigating a company for doing this, given the fact that it raised millions for its campaign using the same technique, is striking.

Yet this occurrence, combined with many others, has prompted Representative Jeff Flake (R-AZ) to sponsor a bill. The concept was simple, the bill would call for the ethics committee to investigate any earmarks or legislation that benefits a company that recently donated money to that congressman's election campaign. Mosheh Oinounou at Fox News has the story of how that turned out:
The House decided to set aside the proposal by a mostly party-line 226-182 vote, though 17 Democrats joined Republicans in support of considering the measure.

The vote came just after the House approved a $410 billion spending to fund the government this year, which also contained $8.8 million on projects sought by client of the PMA lobbying group.
Turns out Jack Murtha (who voted against the bill) and others decided they didn't care to investigate themselves. You'd think, as the Democrats would be controlling the investigation and the ethics committee's findings rarely actually add up to any punishment (particularly under Speaker Pelosi (D-CA)) they would be more willing to follow through on this.

Yet they chose not to. Could it possibly just be party animus: a Republican dared propose a bill, therefore they just want nothing to do with it? Perhaps, but perhaps it has something to do with the fact that the "most ethical congress ever" is more corrupt than any congress in recent memory and wants no light of day shined no that fact, even a flashlight they hold.

Personally I'd settle just for Murtha's election to be investigated more closely. After insulting his own constituents, being repeatedly tied to corruption, and sued for blatantly and falsely defaming soldiers, he boldly predicted there was "no goddamned way" he would lose the election. Was that mere bravado, or did he know something that the voters did not? He was trailing by as much as 10 points in polls before the election, then suddenly wins by a comfortable margin in the end? Are you kidding me?

Hat tip Moe Lane (via Protein Wisdom) for this story.

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