Changing the Culture of Corruption

Speaker-in-Waiting Pelosi, along with DNC Howard Dean, hammered the Republicans in the run up to elections for being a party that allowed and accepted corruption in the halls of power. That tactic worked, with many centrist voters agreeing that an elected office should not be a vehicle for accumulating wealth. In fact, it is fair to say that a desire for the highest ethical standards and transparent honesty on the part of our elected representatives is a requirement amongst voters that transcends party affiliation. This conservative was happy to see some of the worst offenders voted out of office, and hopes that the rest of the ethically challenged will soon follow.

But, is political corruption limited to one party? History says not, and recent reportage confirms that ethical issues abound on both sides of the aisle in Congress. Forget, for a moment, the image of William Jefferson, D-LA, and his freezer full of cold, hard cash; Mr. Jefferson managed to garner enough votes to gain a place in the run-off in his district. Instead, let us review some historical material that shines a bright light on the darkest corners of the Murtha and Hastings political pedigrees.

Here is the Murtha link to ABSCAM. Read it and decide for yourself if Congressman Murtha should be the new Majority Leader in the House.

Here is a report of the Alcee Hastings impeachment. Decide for yourself if Congressman Hastings should be the new chairman of the House Intelligence Committee. (Note: As a former holder of a very high security clearance, it is my opinion that the congressman would not be given the necessary security clearances without being on the Intelligence Committe. Perhaps a more informed reader could clarify.)

Given the established facts, should we expect Ms. Pelosi to honor her pledge to erase the "Culture of Corruption", or should we expect politics as usual now that the campaign is over? Do these two men, political beliefs notwithstanding, deserve to be entrusted with positions of authority in the new Congress? Did the new leadership hear the public on November 7?

Additional perspective: here and here and here.

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