Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Carraro Givin' Vigil a Hand Up

On the eve of the impeachment of corupt State Treasurer Robert Vigil, one State Senator stood up, took a stand and found a way to help indicted State Treasurer Robert Vigil keep his job.

That man is Senator Joe Carraro (R-Albuquerque).

And I'm not sure if there is a soul in New Mexico that can explain why he tried to snatch Robert Vigil from the jaws of impeachment.

But corrupt politicians everywhere, to whom envelopes containing $10,000 case are not unusual, thank you for your effort, Joe Carraro, and I'm sure you're the pride of New Mexico Republicans (they're the one that are tough on crime, right?).

Read about Carraro's efforts to give indicted Treasurer Robert Vigil a leave of absence in lieu of impeachment: (link)

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Wilson-Connection to Indicted Lobbyist Abramoff

Jack Abramoff is a DC lobbyist who has been indicted for his involvement with laundering money for/from Indian tribes and conservative groups. Abramoff was notorious for sending members of Congress on junkets to Scotland with laundered money. Abramoff is associated with mobsters, Tyco execs and other nefarious characters. His scandal has rocked the DC lobbying world.

Basically, Abramoff has become emblematic of the corrupt culture in Washington and everything that is wrong with the way lobbyists conduct themselves in DC and try to wield their influence.

Abramoff’s scandal is, many think, connected to the Tom DeLay scandal in that Abramoff and DeLay did business together and they shared associates. DeLay called Abramoff “One of my closest and dearest friends.”

I’ve blogged about the amount of money that Congresswoman Wilson has taken from former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, but I didn’t look into the money Wilson has taken from Jack Abramoff.

In 2002, Wilson took a $1,000 personal contribution from Abramoff. In 2004,2002 and 1998, she took a total $2,500 in contributions from Abramoff’s lobbying PAC for the Greenberg, Traurig law form. Funny, no one else from the law firm contributed to Wilson—just Abramoff.

Again, this is another instance of Wilson taking money from Republican insiders that are alleged to breaking the law in their quest for power. Something is obviously wrong with the Congresswoman’s judgment or she has fallen victim to the corrupt culture in Washington DC.

This likely means that every year he contributed to Wilson, Abramoff probably showed up to a Wilson event and sought to contact her. Why else does a lobbyist contact a Congressperson.? They want something.

Makes you wonder. How many meetings did Abramoff have with Wilson? What did he ask for? What did he get in return for his contributions? Did he get what he wanted?

Who is Wilson associating with when she travels to Washington .. . .?

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Wilson, the Plame Leak and National Security

I apologize for blogging so much about Heather Wilson. But I think it must be a confluence of events: the entrance of Madrid into the Congressional races and the Republican’s struggles in Washington are focusing my attention on Wilson.

It occurred to me, on possibly the eve of indictments coming down that could involve White House staff, of the connection this has to Congresswoman Wilson.

Connection you say?

Yes, a connection. The investigation into the leak by the White House of a CIA agent’s name was representative of a larger effort by the White House to discredit those that doubted or sought to prove that the White House’s argument for going to war with Iraq was based on bad intelligence. Frank Rich wrote about this in the Sunday New York Times and identified a White House task force that was assembled with the purpose of marketing the war. Condoleezza Rice, Scooter Libby, Karl Rove and others were part of that task force. What’s becoming evident these days is what we all feared—the rationale for going to war was weak and we’ve sacrificed 2,000 based on false information.

To date, there has been little outrage expressed by the Republicans in Washington about the serious implications of this situation to our national defense. I thought the Republicans were supposed to be the party of national defense? They were always the ones calling the dems “weak” on defense. What we are seeing now is embarrassing to the Republicans. Their much lauded defense apparatus was easily manipulated for political purposes. The cold, logical, rational approach of the American military was contortioned. Republicans should be outraged and they should clean up the mess.

Where are the Republicans calling for hearings? Calling for accountability? Where is Heather Wilson?

Indeed, where is Heather? If anyone should be outraged at this entire situation you think it would be Heather.

Let’s go back in time and recall Mrs. Wison’s background. Wilson comes out of the same White House Community that has become the focal point of the US Attorney’s investigation. Wilson, was not only an Air Force officer who worked at NATO, but served in the first Bush White House as the Director for European Defense Policy for the National Security Council. Condoleezza Rice served as a Director as well, on that very same National Security Council as Wilson under President Bush. Wilson is a product of the defense community surrounding President Bush’s father—the same group that stewed for eight years during the Clinton years and re-entered the White house with now President Bush. Part of this group are the infamous Neocons.

Wilson, who holds an impressive résumé, at the highest level of the defense community, should not only be outraged at the performance of the White House of late, but should also be doing everything she can to clear her name and disassociate herself from this renegade, politicized White House. You would think she would, at least.

But she isn’t. Instead Wilson has hoped that no one would bring this up, that no one would say, “Hey, Heather, you know these guys in the White House, you were at the NSC under the President’s father; aren’t you absolutely outraged about what’s going on? Isn’t this a complete embarrassment to the Republicans, the defense community? Since when do Republicans, who are supposed to be so pro-military, leak the names of covert CIA agents? Were the 2,000 lives lost worth it?”

We will see if Heather does anything to hold these guys accountable. She’s stood by and watched for 4+ years, let’s see if a tough congressional races gets her to do something.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

The Wilson-DeLay Connection Gets Interesting

After I blogged a couple of weeks ago that Heather Wilson should return the almost $50,000 that she has received from Majority Leader Tom DeLay's PAC "Americans for a Republican Majority" (ARMPAC) Wilson returned $10,00o received from DeLay's PAC this election cycle. DeLay is under indictment for two counts associated with his management of the non-federal Republicans for a True Majority" Texas state PAC.

I'm not sure how returning the $10,000 she received this year is satisfactory. Aren't the allegations against DeLay covering a period prior to 2005. Isn't that the tainted money more than the money from '05?

Check out www.tray.com and read about the connections between DeLay's PACs (and look at Wilson's contributions from DeLay). What is interesting is that the PAC that is the source of DeLay's indictments and the PAC that contributed regularly to Wilson were housed in the same office and had many of the same contributors. It only stands to reason that some of the violations dogging Delay in the Texas PAC troubles would appear in the management of the Federal PAC (ARMPAC). Jeez, they were housed in the same office.

Even more interesting is the amount contributed by Enron execs to DeLays' Federal PAC. Those are funds that made their way from DeLay's PAC to Wilson's campaign. Isn't that more reason to return the money?

Finally, Since she first ran for Congress in 1998, Wilson has received the maximum she was allowed to receive from DeLay's PAC. Heather constantly claims she is her own woman and that she is not the President's or Tom DeLay's gal. That's what she says but not what she does. It appears that not only does she take every penny she can from Tom DeLay, but she only returns it when she's caught.

How will Wilson react to the DeLay scandal? She's got three options:

1. Return ALL the DeLay money and disassociate herelf from this pariah, Tom DeLay.
2. Keep all the money and claim that returning $10,000 out of $50,0000 is somehow sufficient.

Wilson will probably take option #2. And with her usual attitude, she'll claim that the $10,000 is sufficient, she's independent and no one can tell her what to do becasue she's smarter than everyone else and voters back home don't understand Washington. That's the Heather we know.

Madrid to Announce Run Against Wilson

2 term Attorney General Patricia Madrid will announce Monday that she will enter the race against incumbent Congresswoman Heather Wilson.

Madrid has already made calls to key finance people ready to fund the race.

This move easily catapults the 1st Congressional District race into the top tier of competative House races around the nation along with the plummeting approval ratings of the President and the general disapproval of Republicans in Congress.