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Abramoff pleads guilty

Discussion in 'Legal' started by ceetee, Jan 3, 2006.

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  1. ceetee

    ceetee Member

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    Lobbyist Abramoff pleads guilty to federal conspiracy, tax and mail fraud charges

    I hope the courthouse was thoroughly grounded against lightning...

    Looks like he's also headed back here to Miami to plead guilty to a couple of the counts down this way. Not that he's innocent, or anything, but I think he's basically making himself into a scapegoat... and the full house of cards will never fall.
     
  2. Bruce H

    Bruce H Member

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    I hope he has names and amounts of every under the table payment he ever made. I hope they are spread far and wide.
     
  3. Lobotomy Boy

    Lobotomy Boy Member

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    It looks like he's going to roll over on all the congress critters who took his bribes, turning over lists of names along with amounts of money given and what the congress critters did in return for the money, ie., voted for bills concerning Native American gaming. We're going to see at least six or seven congress critters go down in flames over this, and probably more.
     
  4. Derby FALs

    Derby FALs Member In Memoriam

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    Details
     
  5. DontShootMe

    DontShootMe Member

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    He'll get off completely or wrist slapped on a 'deal' to keep his mouth shut.
     
  6. Justin

    Justin Moderator Staff Member

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    THE CHAIR IS AGAINST THE WALL
    ``Words will not ever be able to express my sorrow and my profound regret (at getting caught) for all my actions and mistakes,''


    Fixed it.
     
  7. hammer4nc

    hammer4nc Member

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    Re: Bribery (aka lobbying)...

    It will be comical to watch the other skells (elected and otherwise) feign rightiousness; run for cover, as Abramoff is taken down and names names. His actions are repeated about a thousand times a day on capitol hill. :mad:
     
  8. roo_ster

    roo_ster Member

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    Abramoff is going down, but will not likely take too many congresscritters with him, as he was into both Reps (2/3) and Dems (1/3).

    If he had stuck with only one party, the other party would have made a lot of hay about him. As it is, neither party wants to lose their big boys (Reps-Delay, Dems-Reid).
     
  9. ceetee

    ceetee Member

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    It's funny how there's a total lack of hue and cry for "justice" coming from those in power. The last quote I read from Scott McClellan (White House spokesman) started out, "If he's guilty..."
     
  10. Lobotomy Boy

    Lobotomy Boy Member

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    My guess is that they'll make examples of the congressmen who most blatantly got caught <> in Abramhoff's hand and spew the old "a few bad apples" stuff as a smokescreen for the others to hide behind.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 4, 2006
  11. Master Blaster

    Master Blaster Member

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    The best thing that could happen is if they could throw out all 210 members of congress who took bribes, I mean political contributions, bar all of them from holding any federal office and hold completely new elections.

    The problem with our government is that the folks in Congress get too comfortable there. The longer they are in the more beholden they become to big money special interests.
     
  12. Manedwolf

    Manedwolf member

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    But the We the People want to lose the slimeballs of all parties. A shame more of We the People won't wake up and demand it...
     
  13. RealGun

    RealGun Member

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    The issue is lobbying, and NRA is likely to be mentioned at some point.
     
  14. 72Rover

    72Rover member

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    Getting scalped

    The interesting bit is that he took money from one tribe in Texas trying to get a casino operation while simultaneously taking monies from another, neighboring tribe to *oppose* future casinos that might be competition to their existing one. What a slimeball.

    "Where's my scalping knife...?"
     
  15. 72Rover

    72Rover member

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    More from the AP wire

    Bush to Give Up $6,000 Linked to Abramoff

    By PETE YOST, Associated Press Writer 12 minutes ago

    WASHINGTON - President Bush's re-election campaign is giving up $6,000 in campaign contributions connected to lobbyist Jack Abramoff, who faced more guilty pleas as part of a broad-ranging political corruption investigation.

    The once-powerful lobbyist was due in federal court in Miami later Wednesday to plead guilty to fraud charges stemming from his purchases of a Florida gambling boat fleet called SunCruz. The plea is part of an agreement with prosecutors requiring him to cooperate in a broad corruption investigation into members of Congress.

    In a plea agreement with government prosecutors Tuesday, Abramoff agreed to tell the FBI about alleged bribes to lawmakers and their aides on issues ranging from Internet gambling to wireless phone service in the House.

    The full extent of the investigation is not yet known, but Justice Department officials said they intended to make use of the trove of e-mails and other material in Abramoff's possession as part of a probe that is believed to be focusing on as many as 20 members of Congress and aides.

    "The corruption scheme with Mr. Abramoff is very extensive and we will continue to follow it wherever it leads," said Assistant Attorney General Alice Fisher, head of the Justice Department's criminal division.

    Bush joined several lawmakers, including House Speaker Dennis Hastert and former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, who have announced plans to donate Abramoff's campaign contributions to charity.

    Abramoff raised at least $100,000 for the Bush-Cheney '04 re-election campaign, earning the honorary title "pioneer" from the campaign. But the campaign is returning only $6,000 directly from Abramoff, his wife and one of the Indian tribes that he worked to win influence for in Washington.

    Abramoff, his wife and the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe of Michigan each donated $2,000 to the Bush campaign, said Republican National Committee spokeswoman Tracey Schmitt.

    "As it stands, this is what we are returning," Schmitt said.

    White House press secretary Scott McClellan said Wednesday that Bush does not know Abramoff personally, although it's possible that the two met at holiday receptions. Abramoff attended three Hanukkah receptions at the Bush White House, the spokesman said.

    DeLay will give campaign contributions connected to Abramoff to charities, his spokesman, Kevin Madden, said in an e-mail Wednesday. The Texas Republican received at least $57,000 in political contributions from Abramoff, his lobbying associates or his tribal clients between 2001 and 2004. DeLay is now awaiting trial in Texas on charges of laundering campaign money used in races for the state legislature.

    Court papers in Abramoff's case refer to an aide to DeLay who helped stop anti-gambling legislation regarding the Internet during a time in which DeLay was in the House Republican leadership. Abramoff, the papers state, paid the staffer's wife $50,000 from clients that benefited from the actions of the staffer, identified by a person close to the investigation as Tony Rudy, DeLay's former deputy chief of staff.

    The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the probe is ongoing. Rudy did not return a phone call Tuesday at his lobbying firm.

    DeLay, R-Texas, voted against his party on the Internet anti-gambling legislation which was designed to make it easier for authorities to stop online gambling sites.

    DeLay attorney Richard Cullen said he believes that when the investigation is completed and the truth is known that the Justice Department will conclude that his client, who had risen to House majority leader before stepping down from the post last year, did nothing wrong.

    Abramoff pleaded guilty Tuesday to conspiracy, mail fraud and tax evasion, with his conduct outlined in court papers that refers to "a stream of things of value to public officials in exchange for a series of official acts and influence."

    The political ramifications of the Abramoff probe were apparent, with minority Democrats intending to make ethics a campaign issue in this election year. House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi said Abramoff's confession in court was "not a surprise because this Republican Congress is the most corrupt in history and the American people are paying the price."

    Some political consultants and analysts are comparing potential damage from the Abramoff investigation to the 1992 House banking scandal that led to the retirement or ouster of 77 lawmakers.

    Abramoff's cooperation has made lawmakers nervous.

    The court papers in the Washington case refer to Rep. Bob Ney (news, bio, voting record), R-Ohio, saying that regarding SunCruz, the congressman placed a statement drafted by Abramoff partner Michael Scanlon in the Congressional Record. The statement, the court papers say, was calculated to pressure the owner of SunCruz to sell on terms favorable to Abramoff.

    Ney denies wrongdoing, saying that "at the time I dealt with Jack Abramoff, I obviously did not know, and had no way of knowing, the self-serving and fraudulent nature of Abramoff's activities."

    Abramoff and his former partner, Adam Kidan, are charged with concocting a false $23 million wire transfer making it appear they contributed a sizable stake of their own cash into the $147.5 million purchase of cruise ships.

    The court papers released Tuesday in Washington raised questions about Ney's former chief of staff, Neil Volz. The documents say the ex-staffer contacted the congressman on behalf of an Abramoff client that won a lucrative deal from Ney to improve cell phone reception in House buildings.

    Volz contacted his ex-boss within one year of leaving the congressman's staff, the court papers say, a possible violation of federal conflict of interest laws which impose a one-year lobbying ban.

    Volz referred questions to his attorney, who was not immediately available for comment.

    Abramoff was once a well-connected lobbyist able to command almost unimaginable fees: A Louisiana tribe once paid Scanlon and him more than $30 million over 26 months. Now facing up to 11 years in prison, Abramoff apologized after pleading guilty.

    "Words will not ever be able to express my sorrow and my profound regret for all my actions and mistakes," Abramoff said. "I hope I can merit forgiveness from the Almighty and those I've wronged or caused to suffer."

    ___
     
  16. longeyes

    longeyes member

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    While the country is struggling to find its way back to its ideals, we get this, the whole ugly Abramoff mess. Exactly what we don't need.

    Well, it should prove a great primer for understanding the state of contemporary American politics.

    But not to worry: A year from now Abramoff will probably be on a deep-sea fishing trip with Sandy Berger.
     
  17. RealGun

    RealGun Member

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    Oh, that's just great. The Bush involvement is a minor point in the article, but guess what the headline becomes.
     
  18. chuckles

    chuckles Member

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    Now all the criminals,(elected representatives), are falling all over themselves trying to return the money. Funny how that only happens when they get caught. And they rarely get caught. Just the tip of the iceberg! :mad:
     
  19. Kim

    Kim Member

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    There is something real fishey about the Native-American gaming industry. Follow the money. They whine about all the good they do for THEIR people while the fat cats play dirty politics to cut out competition for THEIR people while THEIR people (some) live in poverty. Sounds like the good Jessie Jackson and how he takes care of HIS people. Group and ethnic politics is a scam and if THEIR peopple would ever get enought courage and good sense to break away from THEIR people they just might make it off the Plantation and Reservations.
     
  20. Derby FALs

    Derby FALs Member In Memoriam

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    Especially when he got $100,000 but is only returming $6000...

    :p
     
  21. HankB

    HankB Member

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    Iceberg Principle: You can only see 10% of an iceberg.

    For every one like Abramoff we see doing the perp walk, there are 9 more (at least!) who remain in the shadows, too smart or too discreet to get caught.
     
  22. Malone LaVeigh

    Malone LaVeigh Member

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    The piddly amounts of money that some of these slimeball pols are returning and Abramoff is repaying his clients are the real tip of the iceberg. What they all ought to be required to repay is the millions in boondoggle pork barrel bridges-to-nowhere type projects, targeted subsidies and tax breaks, etc that these payoffs bought and which we the taxpayers paid for. Then they ought to be thrown in the slammer or put up against a wall somewhere.
     
  23. Manedwolf

    Manedwolf member

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    No, I think it's just what we need. The congressional equivalent of Drano in a grease-clogged pipe. Flush the crap out, and maybe things will run a bit more smoothly. A reminder that these people are supposed to be PUBLIC SERVANTS, not corrupt under-the-table greasy money-grubbers who take dollars for votes.
     
  24. RealGun

    RealGun Member

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    The timing is good in the sense that deadlines approach for declaring whether one is running for reelection this year. You gotta know that there is some partisan head counting going on, hand wringing about maintaining or obtaining majority positions and all that.
     
  25. Lobotomy Boy

    Lobotomy Boy Member

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    Not that there's anything fishy about the non-Native-American gaming industry. ;)

    Today I was thinking aobut what it must have been like when Congress figured out a way to make campaign contributions from lobbyists legal:

    Genuis Congressmen: "Hey guys! Guess what! I just figured out a way to make bribery legal!"

    All other Congressmen: "Yay! This will change everything!"

    It certainly did change everything.
     
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