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Jefferson Pleads Innocent

Rep. William Jefferson has pleaded innocent to corruption charges. Partial transcript: "Oh judge (*giggle*) that was somebody else's money in my freezer. Really! I haven't defrosted that thing in years!" His trial is set for January 16th.

Friends in Low Places

Indicted Rep. William Jefferson (D-LA) may find himself short on congressional allies these days but maybe he can call up Rep. John Doolittle (R-CA) for some tea and sympathy -- yesterday scandal-plagued Doolittle voted against holding House hearings on indicted Members in a move I'd never be so cynical as to suggest was calculated to keep his own goose from being cooked.

Bringing Down the House?

The occassion of Rep. William Jefferson's indictment has reignited discussion of what must be done to clean up Washington, cut down on opportunities for corruption, and rehab the image of Congress amid a steady stream of scandal.

Sweet 16?

Embattled Rep. William Jefferson (D-LA) was indicted a few hours ago on 16 different counts including allegations of racketeering, solicitation of bribes, honest services wire fraud, money laundering, obstruction of justice, violating the foreign corrupt practices act, and conspiracy.


Upcoming Missoula Event

This article in The Missoula Indepedent discusses Montana's recent efforts on public financing of judicial races, the state's brush with the Jack Abramoff scandal in the form of former Senator Conrad Burns, and an upcoming event, sponsored by Forward Montana and featuring our David Donnelly, on political corruption and countering its influence.

The Family Stevens

The Stevens family has a lawmaker legacy in Alaska; Senator Ted Stevens (R) is the longest serving Republican in the U.S. Senate and his son Ben served as the president of the Alaska State Senate. Their legacy may be in for a bit of tarnishing however, as a wide-ranging corruption investigation touches them both.

House Repairs

Craig Holman of Public Citizen takes the temperature of Speaker of House Nancy Pelosi's promise to preside over "the cleanest Congress in history" in his article at, giving the House and Senate credit for their efforts to date on lobbying and ethics reform, but urging they go further still.


Evidence Mounts That Firings Were Political

The uproar over the firing of eight U.S. Attorneys shows no signs of quieting down, with a House Judiciary Subcommittee now authorizing subpoenas to Bush aides (among them Karl Rove). As evidence mounts that these eight US Attorneys were fired to quell corruption investigations into Republican officials, and tilt the tables in favor of GOP election chances, Simon Rosenberg gives a compelling argument about why these eight were chosen.


First Thing We Do, Let's Fire All The Lawyers

Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez has admitted that the Department of Justice gave false information to Congress about the firings of eight US Attorneys, many involved in public corruption investigations. Emails have emerged showing extensive conversations between the White House and the Justice Department over who was let go. Turns out, White House Council Harriet Miers wanted to fire every single US Attorney - 93 in all - in 2004.

Getting Under McConnell's Skin?

The Courier-Journal in Louisville penned this editorial Friday, the day of McConnell's $2.1 million fundraiser with President Bush, saying Big Money Mitch's "political career has been based on the primacy of money" and this:


He long ago became one of the legendary money grubbers in modern American politics, in order to buy TV time for commercials that demean, disgrace and ultimately defeat his opponents.