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FITRAKIS: Ohio, the DOJ scandal and "Thor" - the god of voter suppression

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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 09:24 AM
Original message
FITRAKIS: Ohio, the DOJ scandal and "Thor" - the god of voter suppression
While I certainly do not ascribe to the notion that voting-related issues are the sole reason for the USA firings, they are important and have become a central fcus of the investigations because the evidence of this particular reason has come to light. Bob Fitrakis has assembled considerable information about a central player in the Republican election irregularities pantheon.

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Ohio, the DOJ scandal and "Thor" - the god of voter suppression
Bob Fitrakis - June 18, 2007 - http://www.freepress.org/columns/display/3/2007/1555

The current scandal involving the firing of U.S. attorneys cannot be separated from the Bush administration's scheme to suppress black, poor and working class voters. In order to divert attention from its voter suppression tactics that won Bush the White House in 2000 and 2004, the Bush administration created the myth of "voter fraud." Using fake "voting rights" organizations, obscure groups to finance civil suits and pressure on the U.S. Department of Justice to bring criminal charges against voter registration organizations, Karl Rove and his political operatives like Mark F. "Thor" Hearne have succeeded in undermining the United States' democracy.

"Hearne was one of the most important Bush operatives that almost nobody in America has ever heard of. ....." Brad Friedman, Editor of Bradblog, told the Free Press. Bradblog was the first to reveal Hearne's masquerade as a voting rights advocate.

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Mark F. "Thor" Hearne & election fraud timeline

1976 - Hearne ... a page at both the national and Missouri GOP convention
1980 and 1984 - Hearne was an alternate at the Missouri GOP Party convention
1986 and 1987 - Hearne worked for the Reagan administration... a law clerk and attorney
2000 - Counsel to the Bush-Cheney campaign ... an operative in the so-called "Brooks Brothers" riot that stopped the Florida recount ... a Republican election observer in Broward County
2002 - ... Republican lawyer who led the Missouri legislative redistricting fight
2004 Counsel to Bush-Cheney re-election campaign
3/21/05 Hearne shows up masquerading as a "non-partisan voting rights activist" ...newly created American Center for Voting Rights (ACVR)
...
5/2/07 Hearne admits that he hired powerful GOP connected attorney William Mateja to intervene in the DOJ investigation of Missouri Governor Matt Blunt
2007 All traces of Hearne's connection to the ACVR and Free Enterprise Coalition vanish from the internet
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 09:27 AM
Response to Original message
1. Facts Closing in Around Blunt's Personal Use of Campaign Funds
Facts Closing in Around Blunt's Personal Use of Campaign Funds for Criminal Defense
by Howard Beale, 05/02/2007 - http://www.firedupmissouri.com/blunt_campaign_funds_use...


Responses to Congressional inquiries by deposed U.S. Attorney Bud Cummins shed new light on possible violations of campaign law by Governor Matt Blunt related to the federal investigation into his administration's fee office practices.

Documents recently made available by the House Judiciary Committee answer questions about the nature of previously reported contact between a private defense attorney and a federal prosecutor. Bud Cummins, in a repsonse to an interrogatory, wrote:

" ... I was contacted by Bill Mateja on behalf of the Governor ...."

Cummins' sworn statement leaves little doubt that former DOJ attorney and criminal defense lawyer William Mateja contacted him explicitly on behalf of the "personal" interests of Matt Blunt....

Press accounts have suggested that payments made in 2006 by Matt Blunt's Campaign organization to Kansas City-based firm Lathrop & Gage may have been passed on to attorney William Mateja of Fish & Richardson ...

--------
COMMENTS

... Jo Mannies has Thor Hearne of L&G admitting on the record that he had a hand in defending Blunt in the federal criminal investigation.

... Section 130.034 RSMo. prohibits converting campaign cash to "personal" use, like paying a criminal defense lawyer to determine if you are the "personal" target of a federal criminal investigation.
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 12:04 PM
Response to Reply #1
13. Republican Party operative Mark (Thor) Hearne played a behind-the-scenes role in both cases
The Scales Of Justice
By Murray Waas, National Journal
National Journal Group Inc.
May 31, 2007 - http://news.nationaljournal.com/articles/070531nj1.htm

In the closing weeks of Missouri's tight 2006 U.S. Senate race, the U.S. attorney in Little Rock, Ark., took the unusual step of revealing that his office's investigation into possible state government contracting abuses in Missouri had found no evidence of wrongdoing by Republican Gov. Matt Blunt.

Separately, less than a week before Election Day, the interim U.S. attorney in Kansas City, Mo., brought voting-fraud charges against four employees of the activist group ACORN, which registers low-income people who typically vote for Democratic candidates. ...

... Mark (Thor) Hearne, a Republican Party operative who had served as national election counsel for the 2004 Bush-Cheney presidential campaign and played a behind-the-scenes role in both cases. Hearne's role provides a window into how a Republican activist was pushing Bush administration officials -- and perhaps in some cases working in concert with them -- to use the Justice Department for partisan purposes. ...

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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jun-23-07 12:17 AM
Response to Reply #1
26. Investigation of Gov. Blunt by AR USA Bud Cummins, Unusual Political Statement
The Scales Of Justice
By Murray Waas, National Journal
May 31, 2007 - http://news.nationaljournal.com/articles/070531nj1.htm

Republicans feared that an investigation of the Blunt administration by the U.S. attorney in Arkansas, Bud Cummins, could tar Blunt and hurt Talent and other GOP candidates on the ballot. Blunt himself was not up for re-election. The investigation was spurred by allegations that the Blunt administration had improperly awarded state contracts to political contributors to run privately operated bureaus where Missouri residents obtain driver's licenses and register their vehicles. Because of potential conflicts of interest, the U.S. attorneys in Missouri weren't handling the investigation.

Cummins said in an interview that a former senior Justice Department official from the Bush administration, William Mateja, repeatedly contacted him during the investigation and asked whether Blunt was implicated in the corruption probe. Cummins said he was unaware at the time that Mateja was making his calls at the behest of Hearne, whose law firm had retained Mateja on Blunt's behalf. ...

In Arkansas
In addition to pushing the voting-fraud issue during Missouri's 2006 Senate race, Hearne also assisted Republicans by obtaining an unusual statement from Cummins, then a U.S. attorney in Little Rock, clearing Gov. Blunt of any wrongdoing in the awarding of the contracts for state license bureaus.

In an interview, Cummins said that during the course of the investigation Mateja contacted him half a dozen times about the status of the probe and asked whether Blunt might be in jeopardy. Cummins said that Mateja had great credibility with him ... he had served as senior counsel to two deputy attorney generals, Larry Thompson and James B. Comey. ...

In a brief conversation with National Journal, Hearne confirmed that he and his law firm, on behalf of the Blunt campaign, had hired Mateja to monitor the investigation. ...
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jun-23-07 07:04 PM
Response to Reply #26
34. Fired USA Fears Blunt Public Corruption Investigation Cost him his Job
Fired U.S. Attorney Fears that Public Corruption Investigation of Gov. Blunt Cost him his Job
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, March 16, 2007
http://www.missouridems.org/newsroom/pressreleases/disp...


... Cummins told the LA Times ... he fears he was fired because we was investigating criminal charges against Missouri Gov. Matt Blunt concerning his awarding of lucrative motor vehicle fee offices.

Cummins began investigating public corruption charges against Blunt in January 2006. Most of the seven other U.S. Attorneys that were fired by the Bush administration were also leading public corruption investigations against Republican office holders ...

... a private attorney for Gov. Blunt contacted Cummins during the investigation and made it clear to the prosecutor that the investigation was hurting the Republican governor politically .... The story goes on to say, He (Cummins) said the attorney wanted assurances that the governor was not the target because wed like to be able to say that.

It now becomes clear that the Bush administration was willing to fire a U.S. Attorney just because he was doing his job and investigating corruptions charges against fellow Republican Matt Blunt, said Jack Cardetti, Missouri Democratic Party spokesman. The Bush administration has gravely endangered the integrity of our justice system all in an attempt to protect fellow Republicans like Matt Blunt and their potentially illegal behavior.

LA Times story:
Cummins fears corruption investigation led to his firing
Richard A. Serrano - March 16, 2007 .............
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jun-23-07 10:04 PM
Response to Reply #1
35. WHO'S WHO? Republican attorney William Mateja, "repeatedly contacted" Cummins re Blunt Investigation
WHO IS WHO? Who works for whom? The same players appear in the "elections" domain as in the "voter fraud" domain, as in the "public corruption" domain.

Fitrakis writes: ".... Republican attorney William Mateja, "repeatedly contacted" Cummins during the Blunt investigation ". . . at the behest of Hearne, whose law firm had retained Mateja on Blunt's behalf," wrote the Journal. ..." (Referring to Murray Waas and the National Journal, http://news.nationaljournal.com/articles/070531nj1.htm )

THIS is William B. Mateja, Principal in the Dallas office of Fish & Richardson, who served as Senior Counsel to Deputy AG Comey while overseeing DoJ's corporate fraud efforts, including Enron, and DoJ's civil and criminal health care fraud efforts. Mateja left in June of 2002. He was an Assistant USA in the Northern District of Texas (Dallas) for nearly eleven years.

No TX USA and MO USA were both investigating Mateja's specialization at DOJ, health care fraud, as was Carol Lam (more on this aspect: 30 U.S. attorneys investigate BILKING BILLIONS, Medicare, Medicaid, Militarys Healthcare, http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph... ). The largest health care fraud case was related to Senate Majority leader Frist, whose chief counsel was Alex N. Vogel.

Again, Cummins' sworn statement leaves little doubt that the former Senior Counsel to Deputy AG Comey, William Mateja, contacted him on behalf of the "personal" interests of Matt Blunt numerous times.

According to Murray Waas, this was done . . at the behest of Hearne, whose law firm had retained Mateja on Blunt's behalf," and Cummins said he was unaware at the time that Mateja was making his calls at the behest of Hearne, whose law firm had retained Mateja on Blunt's behalf. ... Cummins said that during the course of the investigation Mateja contacted him half a dozen times about the status of the probe and asked whether Blunt might be in jeopardy. Cummins said that Mateja had great credibility with him ... he had served as senior counsel to two deputy attorney generals, Larry Thompson and James B. Comey ... Cummins said he told Mateja that the "investigation was not too far removed from the governor's office. You never know what is going to happen tomorrow in an investigation." ... Mateja declined to comment about the matter ...

... Hearne confirmed that he and his law firm, on behalf of the Blunt campaign, had hired Mateja to monitor the investigation. Hearne declined further comment ...
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-24-07 10:11 AM
Response to Reply #35
39. Blunt: "circumvented or contravened Missouri law ... campaign funds ..."
Reports Show More Payments to Lathrop: Blunt Still Paying Up After Lawyering Up?
Howard Beale - 04/20/2007 - http://www.firedupmissouri.com/blunt_reports_legal_fees...

... Blunt's re-election committee paid "legal fees" to Kansas City-based firm Lathrop & Gage totaling $8,546.11 in December 2006. This follows "legal expenses" payments to Lathrop & Gage listed on the previous report in the amount of $11,616.

... previous payments to Lathrop, made in August 2006, may have been passed through to William Mateja of Dallas firm Fish & Richardson. ... Matt Blunt was Mateja's "client."

... the question ... whether the "legal" fees paid by the campaign to Lathrop & Gage were paid to compensate Attorney Mateja for his work defending Blunt's interests ... Blunt may well have circumvented or contravened Missouri law with regard to how campaign funds may be spent. If indeed the campaign's legal expenditures from August and December of 2006 were made in order to exonerate Blunt's personal legal interests, those expenditures may well represent $20,000 misappropriated from the campaign.......
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 09:48 AM
Response to Original message
2. This article by Charlie Savage broke the Missouri Firing story
Missouri attorney a focus in firings
Senate bypassed in appointment of Schlozman
By Charlie Savage, Globe Staff | May 6, 2007
http://www.boston.com/news/nation/washington/articles/2...


WASHINGTON -- Todd Graves brought just four misdemeanor voter fraud indictments during his five years as the US attorney for western Missouri -- even though some of his fellow Republicans in the closely divided state wanted stricter oversight of Democratic efforts to sign up new voters.

Then, in March 2006, Graves was replaced by a new US attorney -- one who had no prosecutorial experience and bypassed Senate confirmation. Bradley Schlozman moved aggressively where Graves had not, announcing felony indictments of four workers for a liberal activist group on voter registration fraud charges less than a week before the 2006 election.

................

"Schlozman was reshaping the Civil Rights Division," said Joe Rich , who was chief of the voting rights section until taking a buyout in 2005, in an interview. "Schlozman didn't know anything about voting law. . . . All he knew is he wanted to be sure that the Republicans were going to win."
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 02:05 PM
Response to Reply #2
16. St. Louis Dispatch 6/6/07: St. Louis lawyer figures prominently in vote fraud, U.S. attorneys probes
St. Louis lawyer figures prominently in vote fraud, U.S. attorneys probes
By Jo Mannies - 06/06/2007 - http://www.stltoday.com/stltoday/news/stories.nsf/misso...

Hearne: "I have not had any discussions with the White House, the Justice Department or anyone else concerning Todd Graves' role as a U.S. attorney," ... "I never had any communications with anyone at the White House or Justice Department about these U.S. attorneys."

Hearne and Graves said ... they had never spoken to each other about vote-fraud matters, or anything else while Graves was U.S. attorney ... Graves said he had met Hearne only once in 1988 ...

Hearne, 45, currently is the election law counsel for Gov. Matt Blunt. His previous clients have included the Republican National Committee and the 2004 Bush-Cheney re-election campaign. ...

In November 2000, it was Hearne who led the national Republican legal team that blocked a Democratic effort in Missouri to keep the polls open an extra three hours. ...

"Thor Hearne's job when he wakes up every day is to find new ways to suppress voters in this country," said Missouri Democratic Party spokesman Jack Cardetti. ...
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 09:52 AM
Response to Original message
3. This article discussed the Civil Rights aspect of the Bush Politization of Justice
U.S. attorney probe raises civil rights issues
Focus on voter fraud under Bush may be partisan, critics say.
By Greg Gordon, Margaret Talev and Marisa Taylor - McClatchy Washington Bureau
March 24, 2007 - http://www.sacbee.com/111/story/143285.html


WASHINGTON -- Under President Bush, the Justice Department has backed laws that narrow minority voting rights and pressed U.S. attorneys to investigate voter fraud -- policies that critics say have been intended to suppress Democratic votes. ....

Since 2005, McClatchy Newspapers has found, Bush has appointed at least three U.S. attorneys who had worked in the Justice Department's civil rights division when it was rolling back longstanding voting-rights policies aimed at protecting predominantly poor, minority voters. ...

Taken together, critics say, the replacement of the U.S. attorneys, the voter-fraud campaign and the changes in Justice Department voting rights policies suggest the Bush administration may have been using its law enforcement powers for partisan political purposes.
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 09:55 AM
Response to Original message
4. This article focused on the Machinations in Missouri 2006 Politics = Ground Zero Strategies
U. S. ATTORNEYS - 2006 Missouri's election was ground zero for GOP
By Greg Gordon - McClatchy Newspapers
http://www.realcities.com/mld/krwashington/17168096.htm


WASHINGTON - Accusations about voter fraud seemed to fly from every direction in Missouri before last fall's elections. State and national Republicans leaders fretted that dead people might vote or that some live people might vote more than once.

The threat to the integrity of the election was seen as so grave that Bradley Schlozman, the acting chief of the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division and later the U.S. attorney in Kansas City, twice wielded the power of the federal government to try to protect the balloting. The Republican-controlled Missouri General Assembly also stepped into action. ...

The preoccupation with ballot fraud in Missouri was part of a wider national effort that critics charge was aimed at protecting the Republican majority in Congress by dampening Democratic turnout. ...

Before last fall's election:

-Schlozman, while he was acting civil rights chief, authorized a suit accusing the state of failing to eliminate legions of ineligible people from lists of registered voters. A federal judge tossed out the suit this April 13, saying Democratic Missouri Secretary of State Robin Carnahan couldn't police local registration rolls and noting that the government had produced no evidence of fraud.

..........MORE..........
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 09:59 AM
Response to Reply #4
5. "calculated partisan efforts to suppress low income and minority voters"
Voter Fraud Used to Gain Political Leverage in MO
Weekly Voting Rights News Update - By Erin Ferns
http://houseoflabor.tpmcafe.com/blog/project_vote/2007/...

Reports in recent weeks surrounding the issue of so-called voter fraud have revealed calculated partisan efforts to suppress low income and minority voters using the full weight of the US Department of Justice ...

... in St. Louis, local officials, led by local political appointee, Scott Leiendecker, tried to stop 5,000 people who registered to vote through ACORN from being added to the rolls. These 5,000 voters were sent letters in late October 2006 warning that their applications wouldnt be processed if they did not respond by letter and phone to confirm their identity. They sent a second notice rescinding their warning when Project Vote and Advancement Project threatened to sue.

Questioning the credentials of 5,000 applicants wasnt the only game being played with the voter lists. In 2005, Scholzman authorized a Justice Department lawsuit, alleging that Secretary of State Robin Carnahan's office had not made a 'reasonable effort' to remove ineligible voters from the rolls. The suit was thrown out on April 13 when a federal judge said the government had provided no evidence of voter fraud. Before the 2006 election, the Supreme Court declared Missouri's narrowly passed voter ID law unconstitutional. The law was drafted with the assistance of St. Louis lawyer Mark Thor Hearne, who worked as national counsel to President Bush's reelection campaign ...

Gordon and Kiels reports show that the real crime marring the integrity of our elections is not voter fraud, but the attempt to gain partisan advantage through manipulation of the federal government.
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 10:05 AM
Response to Original message
6. Bernard Weiner: ...The Muck Of Bush Scandals = HOW ELECTIONS ARE STOLEN
Diving Deeper Into The Muck Of Bush Scandals
Opinion: Bernard Weiner - 2 May 2007
http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0705/S00067.htm


When looking at daily news reports, we all tend to fall into the trap of focusing on juicy details of the scandaldu jour. It's natural to do so. But often by concentrating so carefully on the minutiae, we miss seeing the import of the larger picture. ...

HOW ELECTIONS ARE STOLEN

Republican officials lop tens of thousands of minority voters off the voting rolls for one reason or another .... What Rove and Gonzales want the various U.S. Attorneys to do is to indict liberal organizations -- the Democratic Party itself, advocacy groups such as ACORN, et al. -- for alleged "electoral fraud" in signing up new voters ...

It doesn't matter if there's little or no truth to the "voter-fraud" charges. (fired U.S. Attorney David Iglesias refused to prosecute what he called these "bogus" cases). The point for Rove and his minions is that by charging and indicting Democrats, a lot of legal smoke is created that could lead many wavering voters to believe there's a genuine fire there and thus not vote for the Democratic candidates. Additionally, such charges tie up the Democratic Party and its supporting organizations for many months in costly legal proceedings. Then, too, if such charges are made often enough, it sort of balances out any negative publicity Republican candidates and officials might be receiving as a result of their corrupt political and financial maneuverings.
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 10:09 AM
Response to Original message
7. How U.S. attorneys were used to spread voter-fraud fears
How U.S. attorneys were used to spread voter-fraud fears
Long before it fired eight U.S. attorneys for political reasons, the Bush administration had politicized their jobs by making them push a favorite GOP talking point.
By Mark Follman, Alex Koppelman and Jonathan Vanian
http://www.salon.com/news/feature/2007/03/21/us_attorne...


March 21, 2007 | Under intense criticism for firing eight United States attorneys, the Bush administration has spent the past few weeks casting about for an explanation for the dismissals that involves performance rather than politics. On March 13, White House spokesman Dan Bartlett tried to come up with one. "Over the course of several years, we have received complaints about U.S. attorneys," he insisted, "particularly when it comes to election fraud cases." On Tuesday, President Bush pressed home this claim with a similar statement during his defense of embattled Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. "We did hear complaints and concerns about U.S. attorneys," said Bush. "Some complained about the lack of vigorous prosecution of election fraud cases."

Bush and Bartlett were arguing that some of the fired attorneys had underperformed by failing to prosecute the raft of offenses that make up voter fraud -- things like vote buying, double voting, and voting by felons, illegal aliens and the deceased. And it is true that at least two of the prosecutors who were let go might not have pursued voter fraud cases to the satisfaction of their bosses at the Department of Justice. But under the Bush administration, pursuing voter fraud is not always about performance. It's often about politics. ...
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 10:13 AM
Response to Original message
8. This article breaks the Schlozman Political Hirings and their Obfuscation story
Lawyers say hires were political
Investigators look into accusations against Justices civil rights chief
GREG GORDON AND MARGARET TALEV; McClatchy Newspapers
May 7th, 2007 - http://www.thenewstribune.com/358/story/56408.html


WASHINGTON Congressional investigators are beginning to focus on accusations that a top civil rights official at the Justice Department illegally hired lawyers based on their political affiliations, especially for sensitive voting rights jobs.

Two former department lawyers told McClatchy Newspapers that Bradley Schlozman, a senior civil rights official, told them in early 2005, after spotting mention of their Republican affiliations on their job applications, to delete those references and resubmit their resums. Both attorneys were hired.

One of them, Ty Clevenger, said: He wanted to make it look like it was apolitical. ...
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-24-07 10:17 AM
Response to Reply #8
40. Joseph Rich Says: Schlozman Responsible For Politicizing Civil Rights Division At DOJ = VIDEO
35-Year DOJ Employee Joseph Rich Says: Schlozman Responsible For Politicizing Civil Rights Division At DOJ
Thomas Charles - 04/25/2007 - http://www.firedupmissouri.com/rich_on_schlozman

Joseph Rich, a 35-year employee of the Department of Justice, has nothing but harsh words for former U.S. Attorney Brad Schlozman. Schlozman was installed as U.S. Attorney by the Bush Administration without Senate confirmation.

It is now becoming increasingly clear that the Bush administration used the opportunity to push out the ethichally-challenged Todd Graves, only to replace him with a political tool that would do Karl Rove's bidding--with the full law enforcement authority of the United States government.

Here is Rich on Schlozman:

JOSEPH RICH: Well, another thing that happened in this administration right from the outset was a great priority on voter fraud .....

Watch the video: http://play.rbn.com/?url=demnow/demnow/demand/2007/apri...
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 10:29 AM
Response to Original message
9. 2003 News: Gov. Blunt (R-MO) awards $3.6M state contract to USA Graves' family
Edited on Fri Jun-22-07 10:32 AM by L. Coyote
FINALLY, after researching all the above in May, the smell of other corruptions was getting too foul to ignore. Much more than voting supression was going on in Missouri. The "Show Me" state was living up to its name. Several other reasons why Graves may have been outed emerged, a quite distinct question from the reasons for selecting his replacement. Here is the scandal brewing before the 2006 election focus, in which attorney Hearne interceded, as seen in post #1 above:

======================================================
Target the Corrupt Republican Campaign (Missouri Focus)
http://corruptrepub.blogspot.com/2005/07/target-corrupt...

Roy Blunt (MO-7) and his son Matt Blunt (Governor of MO) are among the most corrupt politicians in America today. Here are some excerpts from Blunt Facts regarding the corruption of the Blunt family in Missouri politics: ...

.... Governor Matt Blunt has tried to prevent the U.S. Attorney's office from investigating his family's scandals by putting the wife of U.S. Attorney Todd Graves (U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Missouri) on the Blunt Family payroll to the tune of a cool half million dollars a year, and he used taxpayer dollars to do it. This is described in the Kansas City Star. And here is an excerpt from a petition to Attorney General Gonzales demanding an investigation of this corruption:

It has recently been reported that United States Attorney Todd Graves and his family will personally benefit from no-bid state contracts valued at more than $3.6 million given by Missouri Governor Matt Blunt. This raises serious ethical and legal questions ...
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-24-07 10:04 AM
Response to Reply #9
38. Scandal Erupts In Blunt Revenue Department Over Insider Deals For Family Members
Scandal Erupts In Blunt Revenue Department Over Insider Deals For Family Members Of Blunt Administration
Thomas Charles - 04/21/2007 - http://www.firedupmissouri.com/revenue_scandal_andy_blu...

... the Blunt Administration has been awarding no-bid contracts to Systems and Methods, Inc. for document imaging work for tax, motor vehicle, and drivers license divisions within the Department of Revenue.

Systems and Methods, Inc. is a long-standing client of Governor Matt Blunt's brother, Andy. While Andy, claims that he does not lobby the executive branch, there has been a disturbing pattern of facts that suggests otherwise. In addition to this troubling relationship, Revenue Director Trish Vincent's daughter is employed by Systems and Methods ...
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-24-07 11:38 PM
Response to Reply #38
44. The BLUNTS: Target the Corrupt Republican Campaign (Missouri Focus)
Target the Corrupt Republican Campaign (Missouri Focus)
http://corruptrepub.blogspot.com/2005/07/target-corrupt...

Roy Blunt (MO-7) and his son Matt Blunt (Governor of MO) are among the most corrupt politicians in America today. Here are some excerpts from Blunt Facts regarding the corruption of the Blunt family in Missouri politics:

Rep. Roy Blunt (MO-7) tried to help Philip Morris (one of his big donors and employer of his son, Andrew, and his then girlfriend, Abigail Perlman) by inserting a tobacco industry backed provision attacking internet cigarette sales into the, get this, Homeland Security Bill.


.... Governor Matt Blunt has tried to prevent the U.S. Attorney's office from investigating his family's scandals by putting the wife of U.S. Attorney Todd Graves (U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Missouri) on the Blunt Family payroll to the tune of a cool half million dollars a year, and he used taxpayer dollars to do it. This is described in the Kansas City Star. And here is an excerpt from a petition to Attorney General Gonzales demanding an investigation of this corruption:

It has recently been reported that United States Attorney Todd Graves and his family will personally benefit from no-bid state contracts valued at more than $3.6 million given by Missouri Governor Matt Blunt. This raises serious ethical and legal questions ..............
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 11:07 AM
Response to Original message
10. Follow the Money. Campaign Financing Missouri Style
An issue apparently ignored by Republican USA Graves during his tenure in Missouri was the flow of campaign cash into the state from interests without interest in Missouri. Apparently, interest in Congress was being bought by nepotistic contributions to a Blunt Family politico in Missouri.

=====================
Target the Corrupt Republican Campaign
http://corruptrepub.blogspot.com/2005/07/target-corrupt...


Roy Blunt (MO-7) and his son Matt Blunt (Governor of MO) are among the most corrupt politicians in America today ...

== Out-of-state donors who needed support from Roy Blunt in Congress donated large amounts of money to his son, Matt Blunt's, campaign.

From THE HILL - July 9, 2003 - Rep. Blunt's son aided by donors from out-of-state - by Sam Dealey

Campaign finance records show that Matt Blunt, the son of House Majority Whip Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), received significant contributions from out-of-state sources ... the contributors seemingly lacked a direct interest in the down-ballot state race but had significant interests pending before Matt Blunt's father ... in 1999, Blunt was named chief deputy whip ... won a seat on the powerful House Commerce Committee ...

Missouri state records show contributions to Matt Blunt's campaign came from firms and individuals with business pending before Roy Blunt's subcommittees ... Contributions from telecommunications-related entities accounted for over $10,000. Railway transportation companies also contributed more than $6,000 to Matt Blunt's campaign. John Scruggs, a top lobbyist for Altria, formerly Phillip Morris, contributed $1,000. Other contributions came from companies and executives in--or representatives for--such heavily regulated industries as healthcare, insurance, chemicals and defense technology.

By far the biggest outside contributors to Matt Blunt's campaign, however, were colleagues of Roy Blunt. Campaign finance documents show 84 House lawmakers made 95 contributions to the secretary of state campaign, totaling more than $65,000 ... "What it looks like is that people were giving not because of an independent desire to help Matt Blunt but because he was Roy Blunt's son," said Larry Noble of the Center for Responsive Politics. "Clearly, there are questions raised by the fact that so much money came from out-of-state donors ...

== Rep. Roy Blunt (MO-7) tried to help Philip Morris (one of his big donors and employer of his son, Andrew, and his then girlfriend, Abigail Perlman) by inserting a tobacco industry backed provision attacking internet cigarette sales into the, get this, Homeland Security Bill.

From CBS NEWS, June 11, 2003 - GOP Whip Tried To Aid Tobacco Pals ...House Majority Whip Roy Blunt is coming under fire for trying to help tobacco giant Philip Morris USA in last November's homeland security bill. Blunt's ties to the company include large campaign donations from the company - $150,000 since 2001 ... His son, Andrew, also works as a lobbyist for Philip Morris back in his home state of Missouri.

... just days after he was named to the House's third-highest leadership post, Blunt - who has close personal and political ties to Phillip Morris - tried to slip a pro-tobacco provision into the bill creating the new Department of Homeland Security.
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 11:45 AM
Response to Original message
11. Follow the Money. $$ BILLIONS and billions in Medicare fraud, 30 USAs investigating
Somehow, all the investigations of the stolen $$ BILLIONS $$ quietly went away, seemingly at the same time as the USAs were fired.

The firing of MO USA Graves came to light in a Medicare fraud litigation:

=====================
Former MO US Attorney Todd Graves the Ninth Attorney Targeted by Alberto Gonzales
http://www.pressrelease365.com/pr/government/federal/gr...

Kansas City, MO 04/09/07 - Medical Supply Chain founder Samuel Lipari unearthed a US Department of Justice memo revealing the Office of the Attorney General had targeted not eight but ten US Attorneys including the former attorney for the Western District of Missouri, Todd P. Graves. The documents were obtained during Medical Supply Chain's discovery ... e-mail dated January 9th, 2006 from Kyle Sampson, ...

... Graves had been active in prosecuting Medicare fraud ...

Samuel Lipari became concerned that Attorney General Alberto Gonzales was using the firing of appointed US Attorneys and senior assistant US Attorneys to obstruct justice in investigations involving public corruption on October 18, 2004 when white collar crime prosecuting Assistant US Attorneys Leonard Senerote, Michael Uhl and Michael Snipes were fired from the Ft. Worth Texas office of the US Attorney that had issued subpoenas in an ongoing investigation of Novation LLC and other hospital suppliers for anticompetitive practices. Samuel Lipari was especially concerned over the firings in the Ft. Worth office where the chief US Attorney responsible for Medicare fraud, Thelma Louise Quince Colbert had been found dead in her swimming pool on July 20th, 2004 and the Ft. Worth office Senior US Prosecuting Attorney that had signed the subpoenas, Shannon Ross (formerly of Kansas) was found dead in her home on September 13th, 2004. ......

================================
HCA's "fraud investigation involved 30 U.S. attorneys' offices, 22 FBI field offices, inspectors general from the Health and Human Service Department and the Office of Personnel Management, Defense Department investigators and state fraud units"

SOURCE: John Byrne, "Company run by Frist's brother made $630m deal two days before he announced he would be leader"
http://rawstory.com/news/2005/Family_company_of_Senate_...

================================
Hijacking at the Hospital
By PABLO LASTRA - November 23, 2005
http://www.fwweekly.com/content.asp?article=3419

Novation, a North Texas company that, while little known to the average person, has become the largest broker of hospital and medical supplies in the country, wielding enormous influence over the lives of patients, the safety of hospital workers, and the zooming costs of healthcare ... the company is a target of a Dallas-based investigation by the U.S. Attorneys office into massive allegations of Medicare fraud ...

=================================
The above are snippets from the DU Archives. Plug in at:

30 U.S. attorneys investigate BILKING BILLIONS, Medicare, Medicaid, Militarys Healthcare
http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 12:01 PM
Response to Original message
12. K&R
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 01:46 PM
Response to Original message
14. TPM, Mrs Panstreppon's Blog, June 13: Hearne "has deleted all references to the ACVR.."
Edited on Fri Jun-22-07 01:55 PM by L. Coyote
Mark "Thor" Ferlund Hearne II, American Center for Voting Rights Director and General Counsel
By mrs panstreppon - Jun 13, 2007
http://www.tpmcafe.com/blog/mrs_panstreppon/2007/jun/13...

Mark "Thor" Hearne, a GOP operative, doesn't want anyone to know he is a director of and general counsel to the American Center for Voting Rights (ACVR) and its affiliate, the American Center for Voting Rights Legislative Fund (ACVR-LF).

Hearne, an attorney with the St Louis firm of Lathrop & Gage, has deleted all references to the ACVR ... someone from Lathrop & Gage deleted all references to the ACVR on Hearne's Wikipedia entry although the references have since been restored.

... 6/6/07 St Louis Dispatch - http://www.stltoday.com/stltoday/news/stories.nsf/misso... - "St. Louis lawyer figures prominently in vote fraud, U.S. attorneys probes"

... Web-based liberal blog sites ... several months ago began pointing to his ties to Blunt and .. fired U.S. attorneys Bud Cummins of Arkansas ...

... the American Center for Voting Rights website was suddenly taken down a few months ago ...

On 11/7/06, Mark F. "Thor" Hearne appeared on C-Span's Washington Journal as Counsel for the American Center for Voting Rights.

On 12/7/06, Hearne, testifying as Thor Hearne, identified himself to US Election Assistance Commission (EAC)as "counsel to the American Center for Voting Rights - Legislative Fund."

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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 03:56 PM
Response to Reply #14
21. Alex N. Vogel's Role: American Center for Voting Rights De Facto Executive Director
GOOD OLD follow the money blogging. Plus, NOTE this typo: Bob "Fitzrakis" (excellent! sic) :rofl:

-----------------
mrs panstreppon's Blog
Alex N. Vogel, American Center for Voting Rights De Facto Executive Director
http://houseoflabor.tpmcafe.com/blog/mrs_panstreppon/20...

With so much media attention focused on Mark "Thor" Hearne, Alex Vogel's role in the operations of the American Center for Voting Rights (ACVR) is being overlooked. As ACVR Executive Director and Free Enterprise Coalition representative, Alex Vogel was in a position to coordinate a campaign to disenfranchise Democratic voters and generate support for restrictive voting laws by discrediting ACORN and other organizations conducting voter registration drives.

I called Alex Vogel the de facto ACVR executive director because it was Vogel's lobbying firm, Mehlman Vogel Castagnetti (MVC), rather than Vogel himself, that was paid $75,000 in 2005 to be the ACVR executive director, according to the 2005 ACVR 990.

The ACVR also paid $72,687 to Alex Vogel's law firm, Holtzman Vogel PLLC, in 2005.

The only evidence of Alex Vogel's association with the Free Enterprise Coalition is a reference to it in a 12/30/05 Free Press article by Bob Fitzrakis, "Fake voting rights activists and groups linked to White House" ....

the ACVR's Ohio Report. The Ohio Report was submitted to Bob Ney's Government Administration Committee and the Department of Justice in March 2005 as evidence of extensive Democratic voter fraud and voter intimidation. The original 15-page complaint filed by Rubick and Koralewski was attached as an exhibit to the report.

The Ohio Report is online here (PDF http://web.archive.org/web/20060209215847/www.ac4vr.com... ). The Ohio Report exhibits can be downloaded here (http://web.archive.org/web/20050324102250/http://www.ac... ).

The problem is that much of the so-called evidence in the Ohio Report was manufactured. Was it manufactured at the direction of Alex Vogel?
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 04:35 PM
Response to Reply #21
22. Mehlman Vogel Castagnetti Inc. Ken Mehlman's brother and Kerry defector partner with Vogel
GOOD OLD follow the bloodlines politics:

--------------------
What did Cahill know about Mehlman?
by dotpeople - Jan 17, 2005 - http://www.dailykos.com/story/2005/1/17/132015/626

RNC chairman ... Ken's brother is a partner in a Washington lobbying firm ....

Mary-Beth Cahill ... brother-in-law ... David Castagnetti ... joined Ken Mehlman's brother as the newest partner of Mehlman Vogel Castagnetti. ... Did Cahill know a defection was planned when the Castagnettis were welcomed to the campaign? We hope not. ...

COMMENTS:

Mr. Vogel opened his lobbying firm eight months ago, teaming with Bruce Mehlman, a former assistant secretary for technology policy at the Commerce Department and brother of Ken Mehlman, manager of the 2004 Bush campaign ...

... Their firm, Mehlman Vogel Castagnetti, has other family ties to the political world. Mr. Vogel's wife, Jill Holtzman Vogel, is the top lawyer at the Republican National Committee. Ann Castagnetti, the wife of David Castagnetti, the firm's Democratic partner, is the sister of Mary Beth Cahill, Senator John Kerry's campaign manager.

--------------------------------
Mehlman Vogel Castagnetti Inc
2004 Lobbying Income: $1,303,800
2006 Lobbying Income: $7,345,400
http://www.opensecrets.org/lobbyists/firmsum.asp?txtnam...
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jun-23-07 05:38 PM
Response to Reply #21
33. Alex N. Vogel, counsel to Sen. Leader Frist, Frist's Volunteer PAC, RNC, NRSC, FL Recount, Quayle
Alex N. Vogel, Partner, is co-founder of Holtzman Vogel, PLLC. ... Vogel served as Chief Counsel to the Senate Majority Leader, Bill Frist ... served as General Counsel for the National Republican Senatorial Committee ... served as Deputy Counsel of the Republican National Committee ... advised the Republican National Committee and its state party organizations on issues relating to federal, state and local election and campaign finance laws and regulations.

During November and December of 2000, Vogel served as counsel in the Presidential Recount, acting on behalf of the Bush-Cheney campaign in Florida and in Oregon ... Vogel served as General Counsel to Vice President Dan Quayle during the Quayle 2000 presidential campaign.

Prior to serving Vice President Quayle, Vogel spent several years in the telecommunications, election law and government ethics practices of Wiley, Rein & Fielding.

... appointed to the American Bar Association's Advisory Commission to the Standing Committee on Election Law. Vogel is also a partner in the government affairs firm of Mehlman & Vogel, Inc.

http://www.holtzmanlaw.net/vogel/
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MagickMuffin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 02:00 PM
Response to Original message
15. Keep Shining that Giant Spotlight, my friend ;=D
:kick:&R

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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 02:16 PM
Response to Original message
17. BRADBLOG SPECIAL COVERAGE: Hearne's "American Center for Voting Rights" GOP "Voter Fraud" Scam
Thor Hearne's "American Center for Voting Rights" (ACVR) GOP "Voter Fraud" Scam
http://www.bradblog.com/?page_id=4418

KEY BRAD BLOG ARTICLES IN THE SERIES SO FAR

03/22/05: The First Report Concerning the "American Center for Voting Rights" - http://www.bradblog.com/?p=1276
Group shows up to testify at phony hearings on "Ohio Election Irregularities" held by House Administrative Comm. Chair Bob Ney (R-OH)

03/22/05: New 'Non-Partisan' 'Voting Rights' Org Appears Little More than Republican Front Group! - http://www.bradblog.com/archives/00001276.htm

=== 50 ARTICLES ===



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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 03:21 PM
Response to Original message
18. NPR: Voting Rights Group Low Key as Scandal Unfolds
Voting Rights Group Low Key as Scandal Unfolds
by Peter Overby - http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=10...



Morning Edition, June 6, 2007 Questions about voter fraud are at the heart of the scandal of the fired U.S. attorneys. Several of them had refused to prosecute cases of alleged illegal voting by Democrats. With the story still unfolding, one of the Bush administration's staunchest advocates in the voter-fraud debate, the American Center for Voting Rights, has simply disappeared.

Related NPR Stories

* June 6, 2007 - http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=10...
Civil Rights Attorney Testifes About Partisan Politics

* April 20, 2007 - http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=97...
Was Pressure on Prosecutors a Partisan Issue?

* March 15, 2007 - http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=89...
Voter Fraud: A Tough Crime to Prove
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 03:24 PM
Response to Original message
19. SLATE: Fraudulent Fraud Squad - The incredible, disappearing American Center for Voting Rights
The Fraudulent Fraud Squad - The incredible, disappearing American Center for Voting Rights.
By Richard L. Hasen - May 18, 2007
http://www.slate.com/id/2166589 /


... ACVRthe only prominent nongovernmental organization claiming that voter fraud is a major problem, a problem warranting strict rules such as voter-ID lawssimply stopped appearing at government panels and conferences. Its Web domain name has suddenly expired, its reports are all gone (except where they have been preserved by its opponents), and its general counsel, Mark "Thor" Hearne, has cleansed his rsum of affiliation with the group. Hearne won't speak to the press about ACVR's demise. No other group has taken up the "voter fraud" mantra.

The death of ACVR says a lot about the Republican strategy of raising voter fraud as a crisis in American elections. Presidential adviser Karl Rove and his allies, who have been ghostbusting illusory dead and fictional voters since the contested 2000 election, apparently mounted a two-pronged attack ...
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Hubert Flottz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 03:30 PM
Response to Original message
20. K&R
The RoveBot cockroaches are everywhere
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 04:53 PM
Response to Original message
23. ACVR's OHIO Report, Rep. Bob Ney (R-OH, Prisoner No. 28882-016), & Jive F. Turkey, Sr.
Edited on Fri Jun-22-07 05:28 PM by L. Coyote
OHIO ELECTION ACTIVITIES AND OBSERVATIONS
Report to the United States House of Representatives
Committee on House Administration, Representative Robert W. Ney, Chairman
Submitted by The American Center for Voting Rights, March 21, 2005
http://web.archive.org/web/20060209215847/www.ac4vr.com...

Contributors (aka Felonious Bob's Jive Turkey List):
Mark F. (Thor) Hearne, II, William M. Todd, Mary C. Mertz, James E. Burke, Patrick F. Fischer, R. Patrick DeWine, Charles H. Gerhardt, III, Drew M. Hicks, Douglas G. Haynam, Mark R. Weaver, Mark Landes, Jeffrey Stankunas, Jack Morrison, Jr., Thomas M. Saxer, Thomas R. Houlihan, Tim A. Greenwood, James P. Silk, Jr.

The American Center for Voting Rights, in association with various law firms and legal
counsel involved in the conduct of the Ohio presidential election, has assembled this report of
events that occurred during the 2004 election. This investigation found the following:

Third party organizations, especially ACT, ACORN, and NAACP engaged in a
coordinated Get Out The Vote effort. A significant component of this effort appears to be
registering individuals who would cast ballots for the candidate supported by these
organizations. This voter registration effort was not limited to registration of legal voters but,
criminal investigations and news reports suggest, that this voter registration effort also involved
the registration of thousands of fictional voters such as the, now infamous, Jive F. Turkey, Sr.,
Dick Tracy and Mary Poppins. Those individuals registering these fictional voters were
reportedly paid not just money to do so but were, in at least one instance, paid in crack cocaine.

The fraudulent voter registrations, however, appear to be only part of the effort of these
organizations to influence the election. There was an apparently coordinated national litigation
strategy to manipulate election laws in battleground states and, specifically, to eliminate the
provisions of election law that would prevent vote fraud. ....
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jun-23-07 12:51 AM
Response to Reply #23
27. Free Enterprise Coalition, Republican front, GOP funneled $2.8 million
Free Enterprise Coalition
From SourceWatch - http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Free_Enterpr...

The Free Enterprise Coalition (FEC) was a Republican front group established in 1998 and automatically terminated by the Virginia State Corporations Commission in January 2007: <1>

"No website, no employees, a disconnected phone and a lapsed corporate registraton. Without the 990s, you would be hardpressed to know the GOP funneled $2.8 million through the Free Enterprise Coalition to fund election-related legal expenses between 2004 and 2005," Mrs. Panstreppon wrote May 28, 2007, at TPM Cafe.

... the Coalition had little, if any, activity prior to 2004 ...

Free Enterprise Coalition board members, Robert L. Livingston, Chairman, Edward T. McMullen, Treasurer, Mark Elam, Richard Heffley, Dalton L. Oldham, Oscar Persons

Free Enterprise Coalition Affiliations = William M. Todd ... served as litigation counsel ... (as well as "general counsel for the Ohio Chamber of Commerce")

Political Contributions ...

* "On 12/21/06, Mac Thornberry (R-TX) disbursed $10,000 to the Free Enterprise Coalition in Washington DC for legal expenses."
* "On 9/14/06, Michael Burgess (R-TX) contributed $10,000
* "On 2/15/06 Kenny Marchant, a candidate for Texas state office, contributed $7.500
* John Linder (R-Ga.) contributed $1,225 for the 2005-2006 Cycle.

... February 2006 ... Fitrakis wrote that Mark Rubick, a "local Republican operative", had filed "an Ohio corrupt practices act suit against the NAACP, the AFL-CIO, ACT-Ohio and ACORN. The suit was later quietly withdrawn after discovery showed that the operatives behind it were linked to the top levels of the Republican Party."

Free Enterprise Coalition
7704 Leesburg Pike Suite 400
Falls Church, VA 22043-2612

SOURCE: Mrs. Panstreppon, "Free Enterprise Coalition: GOP Vanishing Act," TPM Cafe, May 28, 2007. http://coffeehouse.tpmcafe.com/blog/mrs_panstreppon/200...
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jun-23-07 03:14 PM
Response to Reply #23
32. Rep. Bob Ney (R-OH, inmate number 28882-016) sentenced to thirty months in prison on Jan. 19, 2007.
Former Rep. Bob Ney (R-OH, inmate number 28882-016) resigned Nov. 3, 2006. Ney worked on election reform and, as Chairman of the Committee on House Administration, oversaw operations in the Capitol complex. On Sept.13, 2006, Ney admitted wrongdoing in the Jack Abramoff scandal, pleading guilty to corruption charges; to accepting gifts, vacation trips, meals, sports tickets, campaign contributions, hosted campaign fundraisers and thousands of dollars in gambling chips in exchange for legislative favors. Ney also pleaded guilty to conspiring to aid staffer Neil Volz violate a "revolving door" ban on lobbying. Ney was sentenced to thirty months in prison on Jan. 19, 2007.


The proffer for the plea agreement, which Ney signed, states (http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Bob_Ney ):

"Beginning in or about 2000 and continuing through April 2004, Ney and his coconspirators, using mail and interstate wire communications, engaged in
a conspiracy to deprive the public of the honest services of Ney and members of his staff, to commit false statements, and to aid and abet Volz's violation of his one-year lobbying ban. That is, Ney and members of his staff corruptly solicited and accepted a stream of things of value from Abramoff, Scanlon, Volz, Rudy, and other lobbyists working for Abramoff... and the Foreign Businessman with the intent to be influenced and induced to take a series of official actions and to agree to perform a series of official actions."

The specific charges Ney pleaded guilty to are:

1. One count of conspiracy to violate the following federal laws in violation of 18 U.S.C. 371:
1. honest services wire and mail fraud, in violation of Title 18 U.S.C. 1341, 1343 and 1346,
2. making false statements in violation of 18 U.S.C. 1001, and
3. post-employment restrictions for former Congressional staff members, in violation of 18 U.S.C. 207(e).
2. One count of making false statements in violation of 18 U.S.C. 1001. <8>

Indian Gambling Corruption: Ney accepted bribes to further the interests of American Indian tribes. Tigua representatives stated Ney was working to add language to reopen their casino in an election reform bill. Abramoff and the tribe became Ney's biggest donors, contributing $47,500.

House leaders suspended a contract Ney awarded to MobileAccess to install wireless. Prosecutors claimed Ney awarded the contract in exchange for gifts from Abramoff, who was being paid $250,000.
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-27-07 09:54 AM
Response to Reply #32
46. William Heaton, ex-chief of staff guilty in Abramoff probe "has agreed to cooperate"
Former Ney aide pleads guilty in scandal
Ex-chief of staff charged in Abramoff lobbying-influence peddling probe
By Joel Seidman, Producer NBC News - Feb 26, 2007
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/17348236


WASHINGTON - William Heaton, the former chief of staff to convicted Ohio republican congressman Bob Ney pleaded guilty after being charged Monday with a single felony count of conspiracy in the ongoing Washington influence peddling probe of disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff.

Heaton, who is 28 years old, worked for Ney until July. When asked how we would plead, he told U.S. District Judge Ellen Huvelle, "guilty your honor." ...

Cooperation agreement
Heaton has agreed to cooperate in the Abramoff investigation and faces a maximum sentence of five years in federal prison and at $250,000 fine. Judge Huvelle indicated that under federal sentencing guidelines, he faces 18-24 months and depending on his cooperation agreement he may spend less time in prison. ...
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-27-07 09:50 AM
Response to Reply #23
45. The Jive Turkeys created their Smoke Screen for a good reason, a cover up
of the 2004 fraud in Ohio. Consider what was on DU prior to that, and, on websites too.

The 2004 Ohio Presidential Election: Cuyahoga County Analysis
How Kerry Votes Were Switched to Bush Votes
http://jqjacobs.net/politics/ohio.html

OHIO 2004: 6.15% Kerry-Bush vote-switch found in probability study
http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...

Post #53. Deja Vu - 2004 Cuyahoga DU Posts are now a unique retrospective
When and where the study started. Perspectives on this issue have changed dramatically, yet some thoughts were right on then, others not.

========
jmknapp Dec-02-04 http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...
Certified Cuyahoga Results spreadsheet (Excel)

========

AirAmFan Dec-12-04 http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...
Ohio's 'CATERPILLAR BALLOT': As bad as Florida's Butterfly?
Here on the eve of the scheduled meeting of Ohio's Presidential Electors, I'm amazed that a very curious feature of voting in Ohio has gotten so little publicity. ..."

========
Iceburg Dec-16-04 http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...
Chaos in Cuyahoga? 49,000 Votes Disappear into the Ether ...then found?

Intro - In Cuyahoga, the ballot order was rotated ...

========

L. Coyote on Sun Dec-26-04 http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...
"Uncounted Votes in Cuyahoga County" by R. H. Phillips. How many??

"There are some difficult to analyze aspects to the non-vote issue. I hope this summary is useful...."

"The recount won't undo the cross-voting, Kerry votes counted for Bush." L. Coyote

167715, Cross-precinct voting switched votes to wrong candidate by L. Coyote ..
Cleveland Paper Cites Voter Problems, Votes Assigned to Wrong Candidates, AP, 12/11/04,
"approximately 1,000 voters in the two precincts cast ballots just steps away at machines meant for the other precinct."

This incident was detected. How much went unnoticed? Can this be manipulated to switch votes purposefully?

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bleever Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 05:52 PM
Response to Original message
24. K&R
Thanks.
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-22-07 06:22 PM
Response to Original message
25. Hearne Created In-State "Voter Fraud" Front Group, Funded w/ACVR Dollars, Ran w/ Fee Office Figure
Edited on Fri Jun-22-07 06:25 PM by L. Coyote
Hearne Created In-State "Voter Fraud" Front Group, Funded It With ACVR Dollars, Ran It with Fee Office Figure
Howard Beale - 06/13/2007 - http://www.firedupmissouri.com/hearne_acvr_cefm_lott_li...


... In February 2003, Thor Hearne filed paperwork with Missouri's Secretary of State to create a non-profit corporation called Center for Research of Ethics in Public Policy and the Free Market ... Hearne --addressed at the St. Louis office of his Lathrop & Gage law firm-- is the registered agent ...

... the Center for Ethics and the Free Market ... tracks very closely with the "voter fraud" and "voter registration fraud" fearmongering that had been undertaken nationally by the American Center for Voting Rights. In June 2004, just months in advance of a presidential-year general election, the Center for Ethics and the Free Market issued a report that purportedly pointed to "concerns" with Missouri voter registration efforts undertaken by progressive groups like America Coming Together and Missouri Progressive Vote Coalition. That report included language intended to inflate the potential for "voter fraud" --language that has become familiar via various national voter suppression efforts ...

... the only grant awarded by ACVR in that year was written in the amount of $28,000 and given to the Center for Ethics and the Free Market. It's worth noting that on the same IRS 990 form, ACVR reports having paid $122,870 to Thor Hearne's law firm, Lathrop & Gage for "Program/Legal Services."

... Center for Ethics and the Free Market ... was run by known GOP consultants ... Woody Cozad and Rich McClure, who served as right-hand advisors to GOP governors Kit Bond and John Ashcroft ... daily business and operation ... by employees of prominent GOP consulting firm ... consultant to the Missouri Republican Party and Gov. Matt Blunt ... running the nuts and bolts financial and IRS reporting ... Garrett Lott ... at the center of the Matt Blunt administration's political operation and his pay-to-play fee office scheme ... a paid consultant to high-profile campaigns ... Blunt and Jim Talent ...

... Lott has also been linked to committees through which disgraced DC GOP lobbyist Jack Abramoff funneled cash ... the recipient of a patronage-plum fee office himself, but receives income in the form of revenue kicked up by eleven other fee offices to a management company that he runs. Those management companies and their corporate shells were set up by attorneys at the firm of Lathrop & Gage ...

... Hearne will explain this as some irrelevant coincidence. He, like the governor and every other GOP blogger and apologist, has done everything possible to keep the "voter fraud" scheme, the U.S. Attorney firings story, and the Blunt fee office controversy a million miles apart from one another. With what we know now about the snug fit with Thor Hearne and Garrett Lott and their interlocking roles with several disparate pieces of the puzzle, the coincidence theory has gone from unlikely to implausible.
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-24-07 10:01 AM
Response to Reply #25
37. Did "Voter Fraud" Charlatan Thor Hearne Urge White House to Can Cummins?
Did "Voter Fraud" Charlatan Thor Hearne Urge White House to Can Cummins?
Howard Beale - 04/19/2007 - http://www.firedupmissouri.com/cummins_hearne_doj_purge

In early 2005 the Fired Up Missouri community was instrumental in figuring out and reporting on the intricate web of corporate shell LLCs used by the Blunt Administration to effectuate its fee office money funnelling scheme. One of the key facts from those posts was the central involvement of the law firm of Lathrop & Gage in the design and construction of fee office management company entities.

Now some are speculating that relationships between a key Lathrop & Gage attorney and the Bush White House may have led to the firing of U.S. Attorney whose investigation might have implicated Lathrop & Gage in a government corruption scheme.

Observers are focusing on Mark "Thor" Hearne, who is not only a Lathrop & Gage partner, but has also been one of the most (if not the most) important cogs in the legal machine created by the Republican Party to gain advantage by advancing specious claims of widespread voter fraud ....

... Few people would have been as well-positioned as Hearne to intervene with the Department of Justice and help scuttle the investigation into Governor Matt Blunt ... loyal GOP lawyers --whether inside federal government or helping on the outside-- are a sizable but insular bunch. They work together to subjugate the ordinary process and the administration of justice to political need. Loyalty is the currency of the kingdom; truth or rule of law are matters of mere inconvenience ... here in Missouri, we had administration operatives changing DOJ policy and personnel to reflect the specific GOP needs on the ground ...
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jun-23-07 07:09 AM
Response to Original message
28. ACORN Statement on Kansas City Indictments
ACORN Statement on Kansas City Indictments
June 5, 2007 Washington, D.C. After former U.S. Attorney Bradley Schlozman testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee today in response to concerns about the politicization of the Justice Department, ACORN, the national community organization, issued the following statement to clarify events in Kansas City last fall:
http://www.acorn.org/index.php?id=8540&L=0%2Findex.php%... =19125&tx_ttnews=8359&cHash=c8b21dfe47


Were glad that Mr. Schlozman said today that ACORN was working together with the authorities and cooperated in prosecuting the four hired employees, said Claudie Harris, president of Kansas City ACORN.

After ACORNs quality control program determined that four workers had submitted at least seven fake voter registration cards to their supervisors, we alerted local law enforcement authorities. These fake cards never had any effect on the voter rolls; they represented an attempt to defraud our community organization and we worked together with law enforcement authorities to hold these four fired workers accountable.

As U.S. Attorney, Schlozman took the unusual step of issuing indictments and making statements to the press about the case shortly before Election Day, contrary to written Justice Department policy. It remains unclear how or why Schlozman took jurisdiction over the case. When the indictments were handed down Mr. Schlozman issued a statement that read, in part: Those who commit fraud in the electoral process dilute the votes of their fellow citizens and undermine the integrity of our democratic system. The Department of Justice will not allow such fraud to go unpunished.

The statement neglected to mention that ACORN itself brought forward the evidence against these four workers who had defrauded the organization; that civic organizations are required by Missouri law to turn in all signed voter registration applications; or that the organization had assisted in the investigation. ....
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Ms. Clio Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jun-23-07 08:42 AM
Response to Original message
29. k&r n/t
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jun-23-07 01:24 PM
Response to Original message
30. Was AR USA Cummins Fired for Investigation of MO Gov. Matt Blunt ??
U.S. Atty. H.E. Bud Cummins III, uncertain exactly why he was fired, wonders whether it had to do with probing alleged corruption by Missouri Republican officials. His January 2006 inquiry into allegations that Gov. Matt Blunt had rewarded GOP supporters with lucrative contracts to run the states drivers license offices. U.S. attorneys in Missouri had recused themselves due to conflicts of interest. MO USA Graves, now fired, is related to a recipient of the contracts. The MO US Senate set was narrowly won by Democrats in 2006. Scandals may have played a role in that change.

=========================
Former Bush aides subpoenaed
A showdown between the White House and Congress is seen as the pair are called to testify on U.S. attorney firings.
By Richard B. Schmitt, Times Staff Writer
June 14, 2007 - http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/politics/la-na-...

WASHINGTON Two former senior White House officials were subpoenaed Wednesday by congressional committees investigating the firing last year of eight U.S. attorneys. The subpoenas of former counsel Harriet E. Miers and political affairs director Sara M. Taylor set the stage for a new confrontation between Congress and the White House.

The White House has declined to provide unfettered access to testimony and documents that lawmakers have sought as part of the three-month probe, even as Justice Department documents and testimony have shown that the White House was deeply involved in the firings.

Democrats believe the dismissals were calculated to affect public corruption and voter registration cases in ways that would benefit Republicans. ...

Miers, a longtime friend and advisor of Bush, was involved in the genesis of the prosecutor purge ...

Taylor closely monitored the firing of Arkansas prosecutor H.E. "Bud" Cummins III, who was replaced by Timothy Griffin ...

"Ms. Taylor takes her responsibilities as a citizen very seriously, and she is hopeful the White House and Congress are quickly able to work out an appropriate agreement on her cooperation with the Senate's proceedings," W. Neil Eggleston, her attorney, said in a prepared statement.
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jun-23-07 01:43 PM
Response to Reply #30
31. More Cummins: Bush "Fired" Prosecutor in Midst of Fee Office Investigation
More Cummins: Bush "Fired" Prosecutor in Midst of Fee Office Investigation
Howard Beale - 01/17/2007 - http://www.firedupmissouri.com/cummins_fired_while_inve...


... we reported here on the nexus between the rash of United States Attorneys forced out of their posts around the nation and the investigation of Matt Blunt's administration of the license office system. That post noted that one of the US Attorneys forced from his job was Bud Cummins, from Arkansas's Eastern District, who was responsible for the lengthy investigation of the Missouri Governor's fee office operation.

... the Bush administration cut the legs out from under Cummins in June of 2006, while the federal prosecutor was in the midst of his investigation ...

... a spokeswoman for Cummins office inadvertently confirmed the investigation of Blunt's fee offices in a story published May 1, 2006; the conclusion of the investigation was announced by Cummins on October 4, 2006. There is no question, then, that when high-level officials in the Bush Justice Department asked for Cummins resignation in June, as reported by the Wall Street Journal, the investigation of Blunt was still ongoing.

Clearly the Blunt investigation was a matter of concern within the Bush administration and his Justice Department. The idea that they "didn't realize" Cummins was investigating a GOP Governor at the time he was asked to resign is simply not plausible. ...

Who knows whether Cummins may have reached a different conclusion on whether to file for indictments against figures in Missouri government had he not received a loud, clear message from the highest levels that his fee office investigation was counter to the wishes of the Attorney General and President?
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Gold Metal Flake Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jun-23-07 11:03 PM
Response to Original message
36. kick
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-24-07 10:36 AM
Response to Original message
41. Rep Roy Blunt (R-MO): Ties To The Special Interests, Big Tobacco, UPS, Jack Abramoff
Blunt's Ties To The Special Interests Including Jack Abramoff
Roy Temple - 08/15/2005 - http://www.firedupamerica.com/royspecialinterests

Blunt is notorious for his ties to the special interests in Washington. His behavior has proven embarassing to fellow members of the GOP caucus on more than one occasion.

Just days after ascending to the #3 leadership post in the House, Blunt got caught slipping in a special provision to benefit Phillip Morris, a longtime contrbutor to Blunt, and the employer of his then-girlfriend, Abigail Perlman.

He has also be caught up in scandals involving Westar, and has numerous ties to the scandal-plagued DeLay fundraising operation.

Blunt has also been know to do major favors for UPS, and has received large contributions and other favors in return.

In addition, Blunt has performed numerous official acts that favored Jack Abramoff and his Indian gaming clients.

* Blunt Has A Liaison To K Street On His Official Staff - http://www.firedupamerica.com/node/407
* Blunt's Ties To And Favors For Jack Abramoff - http://www.firedupamerica.com/node/409
* Blunt's Ties To And Favors For Phillip Morris - http://www.firedupamerica.com/phillip_morris
* Blunt's Ties To And Favors For UPS - http://www.firedupamerica.com/blunt_and_ups
* Gregg Hartley - http://www.firedupamerica.com/gregg_hartley
* Blunt, Inc. - http://www.firedupamerica.com/bluntinc

========================================
Blunt's Ties To And Favors For Jack Abramoff
Roy Temple - 01/08/2006 - http://www.firedupamerica.com/node/409

Rep. Roy Blunt has performed numerous official favors for GOP lobbyist Jack Abramoff ... three letters to the Department of Interior. In one case, he was joined by the entire GOP House Leadership ... requested a GAO study ... benefitted an Abramoff tribal gaming client.

On the same day Blunt joined Rep. Wolf in calling for the GAO study, Wolf sought a six-month moratorium on tribal recognition by the DOI, which would have benefitted those tribes who already had casino operations, as did Abramoff's clients.

NOTE: Excellent Timeline Graphic PDF file linked from page.
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-24-07 11:30 PM
Response to Reply #41
42. Rep. ROY BLUNT From: Beyond Delay, the 20 most corrupt ....
Rep. ROY BLUNT (R-MO) From: Beyond Delay, the 20 most corrupt .........

===========================================
Rep. Roy Blunt (R-MO)
http://www.beyonddelay.org/summaries/blunt.php

Roy Blunt is a sixth-term member of Congress, representing the 7th district of Missouri. His ethics issues stem from his misuse of his position for the benefit of his family.

Benefitting Family Members

In 2003, Rep. Blunt divorced his wife of 31 years to marry Philip Morris (now Altria) lobbyist Abigail Perlman. Before it was known publicly that Rep. Blunt and Ms. Perlman were dating and only hours after Rep. Blunt assumed the role of Majority Whip he tried to secretly insert a provision into Homeland Security legislation that would have benefitted Philip Morris, at the expense of competitors. Notably, Altria is Rep. Blunts largest campaign contributor, having donated more than $270,000 to political committees tied to him.

In 2003, Rep. Blunt helped his son, Andrew Blunt, by inserting a provision into the $79 billion emergency appropriation for the war in Iraq to benefit U.S. shippers like United Parcel Service, Inc. and FedEx Corp. Andrew Blunt lobbies on behalf of UPS in Missouri, and UPS and FedEx have contributed at least $58,000 to Rep. Blunt since 2001.

By pushing for legislation that would benefit Philip Morris and UPS, and, as a consequence, his then-girlfriend and his son, Rep. Blunt may have violated federal law and House rules.

Family connections have also helped Rep. Blunts son, Missouri Governor Matt Blunt, .................

PDF: http://www.beyonddelay.org/files/Blunt.pdf
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L. Coyote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-24-07 11:32 PM
Response to Reply #42
43. Blunt Not Fit for Leadership in a Reform Era ... Corrupting Big-Money Politics
Public Citizen: "Blunt Not Fit for Leadership in a Reform Era"

Jan. 13, 2006
http://www.citizen.org/pressroom/release.cfm?ID=2111

Rep. Blunt Not Fit for Leadership in a Reform Era, Represents More of Corrupting Big-Money Politics, New Public Citizen Report Shows

Blunt Has Strong Ties to Lobbyists and Indicted Rep. Tom DeLay, Doled Out Favors to Campaign Contributors, Accepted Corporate-Funded Travel and More

WASHINGTON, D.C. Rep. Roy Blunt ... is unfit for leadership because he represents more of the same corrupting, big-money politics that the American public has become disgusted with and that many reformers in Congress are trying to clean up, a new Public Citizen report shows.

The report, Rep. Roy Blunt: Ties to Special Interests Leave Him Unfit to Lead, details how much money Blunt has collected from lobbyists and corporate political action committees (PACs), the favors he has done for contributors, the trips he or candidates he has paid expenses for have taken on corporate jets, and how members of his staff have gone to work for major corporations that later donated thousands of dollars to Blunts political committees. The report also delves into the unsettling nature of Blunts ties to the fundraising apparatus of indicted former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Texas) and admitted felon and former super-lobbyist Jack Abramoff. ........

Added Frank Clemente, director of Public Citizens Congress Watch division, which produced the report, Rep. Blunts tenure in Congress has been marked by exchanges of favors between himself and special interests and a deep embrace of lobbyists. He is an architect of todays sleazy, big-money politics, not the agent of change that Congress so desperately needs right now to regain credibility with the public.

Main findings of the report are: ..........
===============================================

REPORT: http://www.citizen.org/congress/govt_reform/ethics/cong...
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