Instead of Investigation and Reform, Republicans Offer Cheese

Republicans, in full retreat over the Abramoff corruption scandal, are trying to divert the public's attention with lobbying reform legislation that stinks like Limburger but looks like swiss cheese. WaPo reports that the most recent offering, from Speaker Hastert (R. IL), is riddled with holes.

Does this plan reign in lobbyist gift giving. No. It merely changes the rules slightly to require a simultaneous campaign contribution. Does the plan provide any meaningful campaign finance law reform? No again. It only changes the amount of disclosure lobbyists have to provide--so now we'll know a little earlier who's being fleeced and into to whose pockets the money flows.

Basically what this boils down to is a big smokescreen to cover the fact that Republicans are desperately trying to avoid investigating their own. Even John McCain (R. AZ) is only following the money. Once it's determined where the money went, his committee's work ends. The legislation that was bought and paid for and the ethical problems raised, are issues that are left untouched.


Not only that, Denny the Empty Suit is rattling the saber at Dems - he says they're the ones who should be investigated.
No way there can be a real investigation into this matter. It would raise questions that powerful (read, moneyed) interests don't want asked and answered:

* Why is it in the best interests of a majority of Americans for paid lobbying to be legal?

* Why do political campaigns have to be so long and expensive?

* Why can't we limit campaign spending?

As Sen. Byrd put it: "It is money, money, money! Not ideas, not principles, but money that reigns supreme in American politics."


Its the ONLY way to keep graft and corruption out of the House and Senate..I do not care who you talk to or what bullshit they sprout..term limits are the only way to get rid of the cronyism and corruption. In Cali our governor can only do two terms..that should be for ALL public offices.
But doesn't McCain's Investigation have to end - if it leads to or overlaps with a Criminal Investigation? ( esp. if the Criminal Investigation involves 200 DC folks....?)
just asking....
But doesn't McCain's Investigation have to end...

Not at all, the Senate could choose a whole range of punishments for any senators found to be involved. That would be in addition to criminal charges.

Personally, I think the Dems should take the initiative and clean their own house, ruthlessly, and then stick it to Republicans, "Contract with America"-style.

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