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WP editorial: White House stonewalling and the Abramoff scandal

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DeepModem Mom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 10:45 PM
Original message
WP editorial: White House stonewalling and the Abramoff scandal
'No Further Fallout'
White House stonewalling and the Jack Abramoff scandal
Sunday, October 8, 2006; Page B06

REMEMBER WHEN President Bush promised to restore honor and integrity to the Oval Office? He doesn't either, it would seem. A report by the House Government Reform Committee, based on three years of e-mails and billing records from disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff's former law firm, detailed how Mr. Abramoff and his team billed clients for hundreds of contacts with White House officials and dispensed coveted tickets to sporting events and concerts to favored officials, including adviser Karl Rove and Republican National Committee Chairman Ken Mehlman, then the White House political director.

A particular recipient of Mr. Abramoff's favors was his former assistant, Susan B. Ralston. She had gone to the White House to work for Mr. Rove but stayed in close touch with her former boss -- more than half of Mr. Abramoff's 66 contacts with the White House were with her. Mr. Abramoff turned to her as a conduit to Mr. Rove and others, seeking her help in placing allies in government or obtaining other favors, not always successfully. Ms. Ralston, in turn, used Mr. Abramoff as a personal Ticketmaster service, taking free tickets to Bruce Springsteen and Andrea Bocelli concerts, Capitals, Wizards and Orioles games. When Ms. Ralston was looking for four floor seats for a Wizards game -- valued at $1,300 -- Mr. Abramoff emailed back, "For you? Anything!"

You might think a White House worried about honor and integrity would want to look more closely at Mr. Abramoff's dealings. You might think it would be concerned about whether Ms. Ralston violated the rules that prohibit administration officials from taking gifts valued at more than $20, though there is an exception for gifts based on preexisting friendships. You might think it would want to make clear that -- whether technically permitted by the rules or not -- this is unacceptable behavior from government officials.

Not this White House, which has been resolutely incurious about Mr. Abramoff's activities and equally unwilling to provide information about it -- making it impossible to know how many of the reported contacts are classic Abramoff puffery and how many real. "Nothing more will come from the report, no further fallout from the report," White House spokeswoman Dana Perino said Friday....

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/20...
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babylonsister Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 10:52 PM
Response to Original message
1. And the filth is being dug out. I'm so glad and sad at the same time.
Exposure is good, what we've lost is bad.
Thank you, DM M! You are a treasure to DU!
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DeepModem Mom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 11:12 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. Blushing.
:blush:
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Straight Shooter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 10:53 PM
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2. I imagine bush's ultimate defense will be:
Jack who?
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bluedeminredstate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 11:14 PM
Response to Original message
4. Am I reading this wrong?
"A particular recipient of Mr. Abramoff's favors was his former assistant, Susan B. Ralston. She had gone to the White House to work for Mr. Rove but stayed in close touch with her former boss -- more than half of Mr. Abramoff's 66 contacts with the White House were with her. Mr. Abramoff turned to her as a conduit to Mr. Rove and others, seeking her help in placing allies in government or obtaining other favors, not always successfully."


Hasn't the last week been full of reports that Abramoff's visits and contacts with the WH numbered in the HUNDREDS - way more than previously thought (and reported)?? For the Post to say that he had 66 "contacts" - meaning he didn't necessarily walk through the WH doors, and that more than half were with this Susan Ralston, an unknown to John Q. Public, it's like they are trying to downplay the truth.

Am I totally nuts on this? I mean the Abramoff story got some traction last week with the revelation of damning info regarding
the WH, yes? I don't think I imagined it...

Why then is the WaPo repeating this bullshit number in an editorial that supposedly takes the Chimp-in-Chief to the woodshed?

:yoiks:

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DeepModem Mom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 11:47 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. I think I remember the same thing. nt
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MagickMuffin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 12:07 AM
Response to Reply #4
7. Perhaps Casino Jack only had 66 Visits
but his lobbying/law firm had the rest. It's interesting that Casino Jack was able to get 3 of his fellow lobbyist in key positions within the Government.



Pictured left to right: Patrick Pizella (Policy Coordinator for the Bush-Cheney General Services Administration Transition Team. From January 22, 2001 to March 25, 2001, Pizzella served as the Chief of Staff to the Director at the U. S. Office of Personnel Management. Pizzella was appointed by President George W. Bush to serve as a Member of the Board of Directors of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) - a position he held from January 18, 2004 to April 26, 2005)

Susan Bonzon Ralston, (Special Assistant to the President & Assistant to the Senior Advisor Karl Rove, was Jack Abramoff's executive assistant at Preston Gates and Ellis and later at the Greenberg Traurig law and lobbying firm, where "she served as the assistant director of governmental affairs)

David Hossein Safavian (was nominated by President George W. Bush as Administrator, Office of Federal Procurement Policy, Office of Management and Budget (OMB) on January 22, 2004. He resigned Friday, September 16, 2005. Robert A. Burton, OFPPs associate administrator, took over "managing the office")

Casino Jack Abramoff (former Republican "superlobbyist" and now a convicted and sentenced felon cooperating with federal prosecutors, is the central figure in a web of corruption within the U.S. Republican Party, which will likely be the most far-reaching Washington corruption scandal of recent decades)

At the top of the pryamid none other than Herr Karl Turd Blossom Rove (Republican political strategist best known as President George W. Bush's top advisor. He was appointed as Assistant to the President and Senior Advisor to the President by Bush during his first term.
On April 19, 2006, Rove "gave up his responsibilities as chief policy coordinator, a position he assumed" in February 2005 "that strengthened his influence over matters ranging from homeland security and domestic policy to the economy and national security,"

http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title ...


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cmd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 11:51 PM
Response to Original message
6. Abramoff does NOT want to go to jail
More stuff will be coming out. He's a scared little canary.
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