|January 4, 2006|
The Abramoff Scandal Is a Republican Scandal
A BUZZFLASH READER
Let's clear away the fuzzies about the Jack Abramoff scandal before the right-wing spinmeisters cloud our vision.
It is not illegal to take lobbyists' money.
It is not illegal to take money from the Indian tribes.
What IS illegal is to take that money based on a promise to DO something in return for it.
The fact is that Republicans have been in control of all legislation in Congress for the past four years; the Democrats have had no power to move legislation. Yes, they can propose legislation, but only the Republican chairman of any committee can move that legislation out onto the floor where it can be voted upon.
So, it does lobbyists no good at all to try to bribe Democrats; Democrats have NO POWER.
Remember: It is not illegal to take lobbyists' money. It is not illegal to take money from the Indian tribes. What is illegal is to take that money based on a promise to do something in return for it.
The Republicans, along with their media puppets, are going to do everything they can to portray this as "equally" a Democratic scandal -- it is NOT. It is wholly a Republican scandal.
Jack Abramoff is/was a Republican lobbyist who took money from Indian clients and gave it to powerful, primarily Republican senators and House members. There are no Democrats who can move any legislation; they can "urge," but they cannot "move" legislation. There are no Democrats who are the chairmen of committees. All of the Congressional committees are chaired by Republicans -- that is where the power is, with the Republicans.
The ranking members (the minority party, the Democrats) have no power except the possibility of talking the chairman into doing something, which in this Republican-controlled Congress has been close to "never."
There are 55 Republican senators and only 45 Democratic and Independent senators. Nothing will pass in the senate without Republican support. It won't even come to a vote without Republican support.
The Republicans have exerted iron control over legislation for years now, so it hardly makes any sense (to anyone with an IQ above room temperature) that lobbyists would have wasted their money bribing Democrats, who are often not even allowed in the room when the Republicans and their lobbyist friends are writing the legislation.
It is ultra important that we fight back with letters and phone calls every time some media hack tries to paint the Abramoff scandal as equally a Democratic story; it isn't – it's a Republican scandal.
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