So why *did* the Democratic House leadership vote against pediatric research?

So, once upon a time the House of Representatives took up the “Gabriella Miller Kids First Research Act.”  Come, I will conceal nothing from you: it is a bill designed to reduce some of the – well deserved – anger felt towards the national parties by ending a particular subsidy. To wit: the bill takes about 126 million dollars (over ten years) that would normally be given to Republican/Democratic party conventions and instead assigns the money to pediatric disease research. The DNC & RNC aren’t happy about this, of course – but let’s face it: there’s a reason why this sailed through Congress and the President will be happy to sign the bill into law next week.  All in all, a moment of rare sensible behavior from our politicians…

Well.  Everybody who isn’t a liberal Democrat, of course.  The Nay votes on this have a certain basic familiarity about them: lots and lots and lots of progressive names on that. I was a little surprised about that, actually, given that the Senate version passed unanimously by voice vote; but then I remembered that even the safest Senator isn’t as safe as, say, a Nancy Pelosi or a Henry Waxman.  Still.  You’d think that they wouldn’t snub sick kids like this: I mean, it was obviously going to pass anyway, so why not do the right thing for a change and proclaim to the world that money was better spent on pediatric research than on party supplies? Continue reading So why *did* the Democratic House leadership vote against pediatric research?

Democrats lack moral courage to deal with John Tierney (D, MA-06).

Roll Call probably should have expanded John Tierney’s money/campaign woes into its own post, but the details are still tantalizing: The Massachusetts Democrat has less money in the bank and has raised less money in the last three quarters than has GOP challenger Richard Tisei.  The reason why Tierney is floundering, of course, is because the embattled Congressman has a bit of an in-law problem.  As in, they keep getting convicted of felonies… and they keep insisting that Tierney was involved in said felonies, too. This has had an… effect on the race, in much the same way that ignoring the engine light going off can have an effect on your car’s performance; it’s going to get expensive eventually, but you just don’t know when.

Still, judging how this is going is complicated.  On the one hand, I think that Cook is being too generous to Tierney calling this one Lean Democratic, but then the polling is kind of sparse, and old.  On the other hand, local Democrats are trying to even now recruit an ‘independent’ (the deadline for getting into the Democratic primary has passed). And, on the gripping hand, as Roll Call also noted the DCCC is doubling down: “The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and House Majority PAC have reserved a combined $5.6 million in ad time in the Boston market. The market includes Tierney’s district but also covers two competitive races in New Hampshire.” Continue reading Democrats lack moral courage to deal with John Tierney (D, MA-06).

John Tierney (D, MA-06): Illegal Gambling Crook, or Pathetic Dupe?

John Tierney wants people to know that none of it is his fault. With ‘it’ being a wide-ranging noun:

Continue reading John Tierney (D, MA-06): Illegal Gambling Crook, or Pathetic Dupe?

Aw. John Tierney’s (D, MA-06) wife can’t go to a party!

Because of that pesky GPS bracelet on her calf.  Those big meanies in Massachusetts, making her stay under the indignity of house arrest for one, itty-bitty conviction of “iding and abetting the filing of false tax returns by her brother, Robert Eremian, a fugitive from federal charges of racketeering, illegal gambling, money laundering and witness tampering.”  I mean, she served a whole month of jail time for that!  What do they want, blood?

Yeah, I’ve written about this stituation before – also note here, where one of the district’s own papers is begging that the Massachusetts legislature end its agony and eliminate the district – and I’ll repeat: this is what happens when you have what is effectively an one-party state*.  Patrice Tierney got one month of jail time and two years’ worth of ‘supervised release:’ whether or not you think that was a reasonable punishment or not, it’s certainly an indication that it’s recognized that she did something wrong.  To invite her to a Democratic fundraiser anyway is not a ‘formality:’ it’s a confession that the people doing the invitation don’t agree that Tierney did something wrong. Continue reading Aw. John Tierney’s (D, MA-06) wife can’t go to a party!

Gloucester Times begs for elimination of MA-06.

It’s the only way to be sure.

(Via The Campaign Spot) It’s fascinating to see a newspaper make the argument that its own Congressional District be broken up in order to get its own Congressman out of Congress, but bless me if the Gloucester Times isn’t doing precisely that:

It’s a long 19 months until the next election — and that’s no matter what shape the state’s redistricting takes.

But if Tierney’s role were squeezed out in the process of cutting the state’s congressional seat, it frankly wouldn’t be any great loss to his Gloucester and Cape Ann constituents.

People will remember John Tierney for that unfortunate wife-guilty-of-tax-fraud thing from last year.  To be fair, the Gloucester Times endorsed Tierney’s opponent in the 2010 elections – which means that the usual (justified) reaction of HAHAHAsuffer that people feel when a newspaper complains about Democratic malfeasance is actually not appropriate – but it does handily illustrate the problem of one-party states.  Heck of a thing when people have to hope for a wholesale redrawing of political maps in order to get rid of a particularly suboptimal Congressman…

Moe Lane (crosspost)

John Tierney’s (D, MA-06) wife to plead guilty to tax fraud.

It’s bad enough when Democratic politicians commit tax fraud on their own: now they’re having it show up among family members. What is this, contagious or something? Maybe we should make them start wearing face masks. Or biohazard suits.

The executive summary of this story is that Tierney’s wife is going to plead guilty to “four counts of aiding and abetting the filing of false tax returns by her brother.” She’s apparently gone with a plea bargain – because not being able to use one’s status as the wife of a seven-term Congressman to get probation for your tax cheating requires skill – and, of course, none of this is her fault, according to her husband.  I suppose that it would be a bit unfair of me to expect him to say anything else.  Still, these two sentences kind of jump out at one:

He said that she agreed to pay her brother’s personal obligations, some family obligations, and tax payments from an account he funded.

Tierney said Eremian’s taxes were paid to the government, and the mistake Patrice Tierney made was listing his earnings as ”commissions” rather than ”illegal gambling.”

As one of my colleagues noted last night, that sort of gives the whole game away right there.  I’m not exactly sure which obscure Treasury official came up with the idea of making it an additional crime not to declare your illegal income to the IRS, but darned if that little wrinkle hasn’t put its share and more of bad people behind bars.

Moe Lane (crosspost)

PS: Bill Hudak for MA-06His immediate family’s not in court for tax fraud today.

Man, Massachusetts campaign slogans are as easy to write as Illinois ones are.