Monday, January 05, 2009

Judicial Watch Releases Their List Of Ten Most Corrupt Politicians For 2008; Alaska's Ted Stevens And Don Young Make The List

Judicial Watch, a conservative non-partisan group, has released their list of the "Ten Most Wanted Corrupt Politicians of 2008". And this time, Alaska has two entries; outgoing Senator Ted Stevens and Congressman Don Young. These two did not make the 2007 list.

But there are some repeats from 2007. Here's the list, in alphabetical order. Visit the website to read their descriptions and justifications for each entry:

(1). Senator Hillary Clinton (D-NY): A former Democratic Presidential candidate and a repeat from 2007.

(2). Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT): A former Democratic Presidential candidate.

(3). Obama Advisor Valerie Jarrett (D-IL)

(4). Rep. Jerry Lewis (R-CA): Not to be confused with the equally-pathetic comedian by the same name.

(5). President-Elect Barack Obama (D-IL): A repeat from 2007.

(6). House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA): A repeat from 2007.

(7). Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY)

(8). Former Rep. Rick Renzi (R-AZ)

(9). Former Senator Ted Stevens (R-AK)

(10). Rep. Don Young (R-AK)


Former Senator John Edwards (D-NC)
Former Rep. William "Dollar Bill" Jefferson (D-LA)

Here's Judicial Watch's assessment of Ted Stevens:

"Uncle Ted" Stevens, the face of Alaska politics for 40 years and formerly the longest serving Republican in the U.S. Senate, was narrowly defeated in his campaign for re-election in November. But that's the least of his problems. Just days before the November election, Stevens was convicted on seven felony counts for accepting illegal gifts and then lying about it. The establishment of both political parties came to Stevens' defense, including former Secretary of State Colin Powell and Democratic Senator Daniel Inouye, but to no avail. The jury found Stevens guilty on all counts. And now Stevens faces the possibility of a 35-year prison sentence.

Not even the most ardent Ted Stevens supporter will dispute his inclusion on this list. After all, he was tried and convicted. But Judicial Watch apparently is not impressed by the fact that Stevens is appealing the verdict due to gross prosecutorial misconduct. The degree of misconduct was driven home when it was revealed that an Alaskan FBI agent accused fellow agents and at least one prosecutor of misconduct and unethical behavior in both the Alaska investigation and the Washington trial of Stevens.

And here's Judicial Watch's assessment of Don Young:

Carrying on Alaska's legacy of corruption, Rep. Don Young is also the subject of an influence peddling investigation. (You may recall it was Young who attempted to push through the $200 million "Bridge to Nowhere" boondoggle.) Well, the Justice Department is also investigating the 18-term congressman for his corrupt ties to an oil services company, VECO, ironically the same company that furnished illegal gifts to Senator Ted Stevens. VECO allegedly used golf tournaments and pig roasts to illegally funnel cash to Young, which the 18-term congressman then failed to report on his financial disclosure forms. VECO Vice President Rick Smith has already pleaded guilty to bribing lawmakers to support oil-friendly legislation. The Alaska Republican also added a $10 million earmark for the construction of short stretch of road in Florida that benefited a wealthy campaign contributor. Real estate developer, Daniel Aronoff, had raised $40,000 for Young shortly before the earmark was inserted.

Don Young's explanation of and justification for the Coconut Road earmark can be found HERE. The "Bridge to Nowhere" was hardly the boondoggle it was made out to be; all bridges are "bridges to nowhere" until after they're built. Furthermore, Don Young has neither been indicted nor convicted, so the fact that he's under investigation and has spent nearly $1 million on pre-emptive legal fees is irrelevant at the moment. And why is Don Young on the list when William Jefferson only gets "dishonorable mention"? Jefferson's actually been indicted; Young has not.

1 comment:

  1. From Judicial Watch: "no member of Congress can be appointed to an office that has benefited from a salary increase during the time that Senator or Representative served in Congress. A January 2008 Executive Order signed by President Bush during Hillary Clinton's current Senate term increased the salary for Secretary of State, thereby rendering Senator Clinton ineligible for the position. (Congressional "fixes" do not address the constitutional issue. Her appointment would be in violation of the U.S. Constitution.)

    That's so much baloney.

    By signing that Executive Order in January 2008, the last year of his term, George Bush pretty effectively (so he and Judicial Watch seem to think) eliminates ANY candidate for Sect. of State who was in Congress then to serve in the next Pres. Cabinet.

    Nothing like hamstringing said next Pres.'s choices...

    Unless it's a Repub president. In that case, the Executive Order would be forgotten/swept under the Oval Office rug by the MSM, conservative watchdog blogs, etc.