Friday, April 08, 2005
Ignoring The "DeLay" Problem
Other politicians also employ family members in their campaigns, but the unsavory practice makes it appear that contributions result in personal benefit for candidates. And others don't usually pay their family members so generously.
I see. So other people do it, and they are wrong too, but DeLay did it to a greater degree? Hogwash. I am happy they admit that others do it, but the editorial is short on details beyond the vague acknowledgment that others do it. For instance, minority leader Nancy Pelosi has her own problems with travel:
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi helped secure $3 million last year for a nonprofit transportation-research organization whose president gave money to her political action committee as the group was paying for a European trip for one of her policy advisers.
Transportation adviser Lara Levison's nine-day, $4,475 trip to Spain and Germany last April to learn about hydrogen-fuel cells for buses was primarily paid for by WestStart-CALSTART.
But just days before the trip, WestStart-CALSTART announced that Mrs. Pelosi had helped the nonprofit group secure $1 million from the Federal Transit Administration for a bus rapid-transit program. A month after the Levison trip, the group sent out a press release thanking her for a $2 million grant for a fuel-cell program.
According to campaign records, WestStart-CALSTART Chief Executive Officer John R. Boesel also gave $1,000 to one of Mrs. Pelosi's political action committees in 2003 and $1,000 to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
The SAEN does not mention this. In addition, a 2003 LA Times article points out that Democratic Senator, and minority leader, Harry Reid also has his family on the payroll. In fact, Reid said there was nothing wrong about employing ones family or using them as consultants (no link to article available). Here is what a recent NY Times article said:
"Although several members of Congress employ family members as campaign managers or on their political action committees..."
Pretty obvious to me that by focusing on DeLay the SAEN editorial board is serving an agenda.