A damning silence?

March 13, 2010

Representative Joe Sestak (D-PA) has accused the Obama Adminstration of, in effect, offering him a bribe to drop his primary challenge to Senator Arlen Specter (D-R-D-PA). Reporters have repeatedly asked White House Press Secretary Gibbs for information and clarifications. Gibbs has dodged these questions in a way worthy of a Nixon staffer. Byron York recounts the tale so far and asks how long will Gibbs keep stonewalling?

Sestak’s charge is a serious one that could potentially involve criminal conduct on the part of someone in the administration. And Sestak, while not offering any new details, is standing by his story. “Something happened last July before I got in the race,” he said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” program March 9. When he was asked about it on the radio program, Sestak continued, “I answered it honestly; I just said yes, but I didn’t go beyond that. And actually, Joe, I don’t think I should. That’s politics.” Just to clarify, Sestak said, of the radio interview, “They said to me, have you been offered a job not to get in the race, or to get in the race? And I said yes.”

Not only is the charge serious; Sestak himself, with his long career in the Navy before winning a seat in Congress, is a serious source. On March 8, at a health care event in Pennsylvania, President Obama referred to Sestak as “somebody who rendered outstanding service to our nation before he was in Congress.”

And yet, after an initial denial, the White House spokesman hasn’t been able to muster any comment on the allegation. Gibbs has not repeated the denial, hasn’t issued a new one, and has now dropped any pretense of checking on the story. How long will the Sestak Stonewall continue?

Between this and the long-simmering Inspectors-General scandal alone, there are more than a few political IEDs that could blow up on the administration before November.

RELATED: Politico reports on questions posed to White House Counsel Robert Bauer by Congressman Darrell Issa of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee regarding Sestak’s accusation.

(via Power Line)

UPDATE: Welcome visitors from Ace of Spades, and thanks for the link! 🙂

UPDATE II: Ed Morrissey thinks this won’t go anywhere legally (and I think he’s right), but that it could be important politically.

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PJTV salutes Arlen Specter!

October 8, 2009

Feeling beat up Laughing

LINK: Pajamas Media TV.


If the job is too tough, then quit

August 4, 2009

Now we have another congressman whining about actually having to read bills before voting on them. First it was Representative John “You gotta be kidding” Conyers, and now it’s New Hampshire Democrat Paul Hodes telling the editorial board of the Nashua Telegraph to get real:

Democratic Rep. Paul Hodes (NH-02) believes reading every bill in Congress “would slow down the business of Congress to a crawl and it would be hard to get done what needs to be done.”

Members of Congress who don’t read the bills they are voting on “is not necessarily the major problem with the way Congress functions,” he said.

Hodes, who is the sole Democratic candidate in the race to replace the retiring New Hampshire Sen. Judd Gregg, made the remarks during a recent editorial board meeting with the Nashua Telegraph.

“Hodes said it’s not realistic to expect members of Congress to read every bill word-for-word, as Congress took more than 2,000 votes in the session that ended in December,” the paper reports.

This year, Hodes voted in support of President Barack Obama’s stimulus package and for so-called cap-and-trade legislation. Both measures were finalized late in the legislative process and rushed to a vote before any individual member could read the bills.

I don’t know. Maybe I’ve got this whole representative democracy thing wrong. Am I silly to think someone I choose to run the government for me should actually understand the choices he makes, rather than push the voting buttons at random? By Mr. Hodes’ logic, why even show up at committee hearings to ask questions and hear witnesses? That’s got to be awfully hard, too, on the poor, overworked congresscritters.

Look, I don’t expect them to read every single bill that comes before the chamber, but on matters as consequential as a $787 billion “emergency” stimulus  bill, or health-care reforms and cap-and-trade measures that aim to establish federal control over vast swathes of the economy… You’re damn right I expect Hodes & Co. to read and understand the bills, or recuse themselves from voting on it!

And maybe they should resign, too, if that’s too much to ask of them.  Waiting

(via Hot Air)

On a related note, Iowahawk again turns over his blog to a guest-editorial, this time from Health and Human Services Secretary Secretary Kathleen Sibelius and Democratic Republican Democratic Senator Arlen Specter on a growing crisis in America – that America’s Government Losing Faith in Out-of-Touch Constituents:

Nowhere has this disturbing trend been more evident than in the recent debate over health care reform. Like hundreds of our fellow legislators and government officials, we recently traveled to a town hall meeting to distribute a grassroots press release explaining why this critical legislation is a done deal. Our advance staffs said that should anticipate a respectful, positive hearing from local media and bused-in union members. Instead we were greeted by a rude howling mob of idiot “voters” who refused to listen to reason, and ruined what should have been a killer photo op for our re-election ad campaign.

Have these arrogant ivory tower armchair quarterbacks ever had to live with the pressures of being a working stiff Senator or Cabinet Secretary in Washington DC? Have they ever had to juggle markup language on a supplemental appropriations bill, or deal with an incompetent Chief of Staff who constantly double-books fund raising dinners? Apparently not, if their whiny obnoxious chants are any indication. “Read the Bill! Read the Bill!” blah, blah, blah, as if we weren’t already exhausted from writing and voting for the damned thing.

Mockery. It’s what makes American politics great. Hee hee