In the course of noting that former Murtha crony Mark Critz received 52% of his first-quarter contributions from “[d]efense contractors, local business officers and lobbyists that relied on earmarked federal contracts from Murtha” the Washington Post notes this interesting little detail:
Four former lobbyists of the PMA Group, a once-powerful lobbying shop, also chipped in to elect Critz. Murtha arranged for his spending panel to steer hundreds of millions of earmarked contracts to PMA clients. The firm shut its doors amid a criminal investigation scrutinizing more than $1 million dollars in campaign contributions it gave to Murtha and other subcommittee members. Critz’s money came as well from top officers of companies that were longtime beneficiaries of Murtha’s largess in doling out military contracts: Argon ST, Progeny Systems, Concurrent Technologies Corporation, Advanced Acoustic Concepts and Mountaintop Technologies.
Ah, PMA. Did you know that they got $117 million in earmarks from the Democrats in the last ten years? Impressive, in its way.
Continue reading PMA trying to retain lease on PA-12?
Trying to ensure that Brian Moran’s bid for Virginia Governor isn’t overshadowed by his brother going to jail is as good an explanation as any for the Democrats’ unwillingness to throw a few of their own to the wolves. Although Chris Stirewalt’s theory (H/T: Instapundit):
Americans generally have low ethical expectations for their politicians. A little double-talking or some womanizing or an oversized ego have long been considered pretty normal for elected officials. Bill Clinton wasn’t the first of his kind, just the apotheosis.
And despite the worshipful tone taken by many toward President Barack Obama, most Americans still know better than to take politicians too seriously.
But there is an invisible, shifting line that anyone in public life mustn’t cross.
What keeps politics interesting, though, is that no one ever seems to learn the lesson.
…does have the virtue of simplicity, and you can take that any way that you like.
Crossposted to RedState.
The Democratic Party’s more important than your little, piddling districts, you see. And much more important than your principles.
They actually sent that out as the header of an email, in response to Rep. Flake’s latest attempt to get some sort of accountability in place over earmarks and internal corruption:
As the House prepared to vote this week on Republican Rep. Jeff Flake’s push for an ethics investigation involving Rep. John Murtha and other senior appropriators, Democratic leaders sent an unmistakable message to their members:
“Don’t be a Flake.”
That was the subject line of an e-mail that staffers for first- and second-term Democrats received Tuesday from Rep. Chris Van Hollen, assistant to Speaker Nancy Pelosi. The message said that Democrats would once again be “voting to table another Flake resolution” — and it made clear that leadership would have its eyes on any Democrats even thinking about defecting.
This is all political, of course – well, it’s all political on the Democratic side. The long-term Democratic Congressmen (most of whom have never really recovered from the psychological trauma of losing the House in 1994) have precisely zero interest in turning off the spigots, now that their mouths are underneath them again; and the new crop of Democratic Congressmen are well aware that it’s going to take at least ten years for them to turn into long-term Democratic Congressmen, and they don’t really have ten years. And that the long-term Congressmen don’t really care if a few Blue-in-Red districts flip back next year. And that the only thing keeping Democrats together in Congress is…
Well, I’m sure that there’s something. In the meantime, marvel at a situation where wanting accountability makes you a partisan ‘flake.’ A definition that I am absolutely certain bemused such long-term members of the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy as Democracy 21, Common Cause, Public Citizen and U.S. PIRG*.
Crossposted to RedState.