Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Minutemen Biographies

A heads up folks....A Tea party at Kearney Missouri this Saturday starting at 10 AM at the Jesse James Fairgrounds, 1 mile North of Kearney Missouri on highway 33
Last week I sent out the first in a series of our MCDC members biographies, I need yours! Here are three more comparisons of American Patriots who are called everything under the sun and some of our elected politicians. I am going to start with item # 1, many of our elected so called leaders are responsible for our current crashed economy however they have put the blame on anyone and everyone but the true causes, themselves. They call us names and you know what they are. Check out the three despicable politicians and compare. Remember, THEY call us names!

Two of the comparisons this week are Barney Frank of Massachusetts and Chris Dodd of Connecticut. Both are largely responsible for the banking losses, they saw it coming as did others but lied about it, warned no one. They both received large donations from AIG and Dodd is now in trouble with his constituents, he has been found out, Frank should be next. Here's a history on both from my source, Google. Also read about Rep William Jefferson of Louisiana for example #3
Ed Hayes
Kansas and Missouri States Director
Heart of America Chapter Director
Minuteman Civil Defense Corps
913 620 0771
The Minutemen
Minuteman Pete Robbins
I am a product analyst for a Kansas City based company (company's name not to be mentioned) that sells and builds large and small metal buildings.
The buildings my company makes can range from simple garages to large multistory buildings, schools and shopping centers.
I am also a biker (motorcycle rider) and a proud "Patriot Guard Rider".
The role of a "Patriot Guard Rider" is to attend fallen soldier's funerals to show respect, honor and support as well as protect the family of the fallen soldier from any protestors who might show up. I have been with the Patriot Guard Rider's organization now for over two years.
I am also involved in a custom car club in my community and am in the local Lion's club as well.
I have never been in the military, but have had close relatives who have been.
I am 53 years old and married.
I am also a proud American who loves his country.
Minuteman Tom Palmer

Spouse: Kansas State Senator Peggy Palmer
3 children and 6 grandchildren

Retired from Mobil Oil Corporation. Specialized in Operations of oil refineries. Operations Shift Superintendent in three major Mobil refineries, including 10 years in Yanbu, Saudi Arabia Pemref Export Refinery, located on the Red Sea north of Jeddah 320 kilometers.

Present: Consultant for Western Rope, specializing in refinery operations.
Web site designer and iron products creator (both are Internet businesses)

Home: Augusta, Kansas (15 miles east of Wichita)

Statement: After living outside of the U.S. for 10 years, my wife and I gained a greater love of our country which most people never experience. With most of our rights taken away living in Saudi, it really gave us a deep appreciation of what we have here in our country. Ever since, we both have attempted to show our appreciation by being public servants when called upon. We need to protect our borders and our freedoms at all times!
Minuteman Robert M. Baker/recently deceased
Died March 29, 2008 - Age 82 years – Campo California died of natural causes in his pickup truck watching for illegal aliens crossing our country’s southern California border. Mr. Baker was & will be forever a Minuteman Civil Defense Corps volunteer; he was on his third border watch.
Bob was from Ashland, Kansas and was a firm believer in the proposition that "you only go around once in this world, so you had better get done what you want to do". Among his many activities, he found time to attend 5 different universities and receive 3 degrees including a doctorate in law.He was baptized into the Christian Church in 1935 and later became a member of the First Christian Church of Ashland, Kansas and served on various church boards for many years, and was an Elder of the Christian Church.He started working for others when he was 9 years old, and had a long, varied and distinguished career and life. He was a paperboy for 9 years before he went into the US Army. After he was discharged, he attended Wichita University to obtain an Aeronautical Engineering Degree; he then obtained his law degree from Washburn University and was a lawyer for over 40 years and served as District Judge of the 16th Judicial District of Kansas for 2 terms. Among other things notable in his active career, he had been a policeman on the Wichita Police Force, a deputy sheriff of Shawnee County, Kansas; Ass. Court reporter of the Supreme Court of Kansas,; a mayor of Ashland; Ashland Fire Chief for over 20 years, and Clark County Attorney for many years.He was also a master instructor in the Kansas Firearm Hunter safety program. In Boy Scouts, he had been a Scoutmaster; served on various District and Council Boards; he held the Scouters Award, belonged to the Order Of The Arrow, he held the Wood badge Award; he has been Council President for many years taught and examined for the Lifesaving and Swimming merit badges.He was one of the original purchasers of the Spanish Peaks Scout Ranch in Colorado.He was twice elected Master of the Ashland Masonic Lodge; he had been Deputy Grand Master of the Masons; he was a member of the York Rite bodies of Dodge City and a member of the Scottish Rite bodies of Wichita, and was one of only 2 K.C.C.H. recipients ever, in the Ashland Masonic Lodge.He has also been a past patron of the Order Of The Eastern Star, and a Shriner and a pilot of the Mercy Plane a member of Legion Of Honor and a Provost Guard.Bob was a trap shooter and a holder of many world and state shooting titles. He was made a member of the Kansas Trap Shooter's Hall Of Fame; he had competed all over the world in many countries and continents in World Championships, Pan American games; American Championships; the Macabiah games, and was a finalist in the Olympic tryouts 3 times to represent the United States.A Veteran of World War 2; he was active and a past commander in the V.F.W. and American Legion posts; and has been Kansas State Commander of the Military Order of the Cootie, the honor degree of the V.F.W.He was a big game hunter and he and Charlotte hunted on 4 continents and at one time he had held various world records in hunting and shooting. He broke his hip while hunting in Africa in 1989, but this only slowed him down temporarily. He then went to ranching and accumulating land, and continued to do so until his death.

Robert Milton Baker

Barney Frank
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Barney Frank

Member of the U.S. House of Representativesfrom Massachusetts's 4th district
Assumed office January 5, 1981
Preceded by
Robert Drinan
Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee
Assumed office January 4, 2007
Massachusetts House of Representatives of Massachusetts
In office1973 – 1981
Michael S. Dukakis
March 31, 1940 (1940-03-31) (age 69)Bayonne, New Jersey
Political party
Newton, Massachusetts
Alma mater
Harvard CollegeHarvard Law School
Attorney, United States Representative
Barnett "Barney" Frank (born March 31, 1940 in Bayonne, New Jersey) is an American politician in the United States House of Representatives representing Massachusetts's 4th congressional district since 1981. In 1982 he won his first full term and has been re-elected ever since by wide margins.[2] In 1987 he became the second openly gay member of the House of Representatives, and has become one of the most prominent openly gay politicians in the United States.[3] In 2007 Frank became the chairman of the House Financial Services Committee (when the Democratic Party won a majority in the House of Representatives). The committee oversees the housing and banking industries.
The New York Times has called Frank "one of the most powerful members of Congress"[4] and "a key deal-maker, an unlikely bridge between his party’s left-wing base and [...] free-market conservatives".[5] President Bill Clinton's former speechwriter Josh Gottheimer stated Frank is one of the nation's "brightest and most energetic defenders of civil rights issues".[6]
1 Early life
2 Political career
2.1 Steve Gobie
3 Political initiatives and positions
3.1 LGBT issues
3.2 Medical marijuana
3.3 Online gambling rights
3.4 Free speech
3.5 Abortion
3.6 Military spending
4 House Financial Services Committee
4.1 Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac
4.2 Chair of the House Financial Services Committee
5 Personal life
6 Bibliography
7 Notes
8 References
9 External links
9.1 Articles

[edit] Early life
Frank was born to a Jewish family in Bayonne, New Jersey and was educated at Harvard College, where he resided in Kirkland House and then Winthrop House, graduating in 1962. He taught undergraduates at Harvard while studying for a Ph.D., but left in 1968 before completing the degree, to become Boston mayor Kevin White's Chief Assistant, a position he held for three years. He then served for a year as Administrative Assistant to Congressman Michael J. Harrington.

[edit] Political career
In 1972 Frank was elected to the Massachusetts House of Representatives where he served for eight years. While a Representative he entered Harvard Law School and graduated in 1977. While in state and local government, Frank taught part time at the University of Massachusetts Boston, the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard and at Boston University. He published numerous articles on politics and public affairs, and in 1992 he published Speaking Frankly, an essay on the role the Democratic Party should play in the 1990s.
In 1979, Frank became a member of the Massachusetts Bar. A year later, he ran for the U.S. House of Representatives in the 4th congressional district, hoping to succeed Father Robert Drinan, who had left Congress following a call by Pope John Paul II for priests to withdraw from political positions. In the Democratic primary held on September 16, 1980 Frank won 51.3 percent of the vote in a four-candidate field. His nearest opponent, Arthur J. Clark, won 45.9 percent and finished almost 4,500 votes behind.[7] As the Democratic nominee, Frank faced Republican Richard A. Jones in the general election and won narrowly, 51.9 percent to 48.1 percent.[8]

1981, Congressional Pictorial Directory - Frank's first term as Congressman
For his first term, Frank represented a district in the western and southern suburbs of Boston, anchored by Brookline and Newton, Massachusetts. However, in 1982, redistricting forced him to run against Republican Margaret Heckler, who represented a district centered on the South Coast, including Fall River and New Bedford. Although the newly configured district retained Frank's district number — the 4th — it was geographically more Heckler's district. Frank focused on Heckler's initial support for President Ronald Reagan's tax cuts, and won by 20 percentage points. He has not faced credible opposition since, and has been reelected thirteen times.[9][10]

[edit] Steve Gobie
In 1990, The House Ethics Committee recommended Frank be reprimanded because he "reflected discredit upon the House" by using his congressional office to fix 33 of Steve Gobie's parking tickets. Frank confirmed that he paid Gobie for sex, hired him with personal funds as an aide and wrote letters on congressional stationery on his behalf to Virginia probation officials, but Frank said he fired Gobie when he learned that prostitution clients were visiting the apartment.[11]
The investigation into Gobie and Frank's interactions were prompted by Gobie's attempt to cash in on assertions that Frank knew and approved of Gobie's illegal activities in the Frank residence. "Two years [after Frank fired Gobie], Gobie tried unsuccessfully to sell his story to the Washington Post. He then gave the story to the Washington Times for nothing, in hopes of getting a book contract for the male version of The Mayflower Madam."[12] After an investigation, the Ethics Committee found no evidence that Frank had known of or been involved in the alleged illegal activity and dismissed all of Gobie's more scandalous claims.[13][14]
Attempts to expel or censure Frank, led by Republican member Larry Craig (who himself was later embroiled in his own gay sex scandal), failed.[15][16] Rather, the House voted 408-18 to reprimand Frank who later won re-election in 1990 with 66 percent of the vote, and has won by larger margins ever since.[17]

[edit] Political initiatives and positions

Frank in his congressional office in 2002

[edit] LGBT issues
Frank has been outspoken on many civil rights issues, including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights. In 1987, he publicly came out as gay.[18] He said in a 1996 interview: "I'm used to being in the minority. I'm a left-handed gay Jew. I've never felt, automatically, a member of any majority." In 1995, then-Republican House Majority Leader Dick Armey famously referred to Frank as "Barney Fag" in a press interview. Armey apologized and said it was "a slip of the tongue". Frank did not accept Armey's explanation, saying "I turned to my own expert, my mother, who reports that in 59 years of marriage, no one ever introduced her as Elsie Fag."[19]
Through the 1990 Immigration Act, Frank was a major force in removing restrictions based on "sexual preference exclusion" which had been explicitly prohibited by early immigration law.[20] In 1998, Frank founded the National Stonewall Democrats, the national LGBT Democratic organization. In February 2009, Frank was one of three openly gay members of Congress, along with Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin and Jared Polis of Colorado.
Frank is known for his witty, self-deprecating sense of humor. He once famously quipped that he was unable to complete his review of the Starr Report detailing President Bill Clinton's relationship with Monica Lewinsky, complaining that it was "too much reading about heterosexual sex".[21] In 2004 and again in 2006, a survey of Capitol Hill staffers published in Washingtonian gave Frank the title of the "brainiest", "funniest", and "most eloquent" member of the House.[22]
Frank was accused by Rep. John Hostettler (R-IN) of having a "radical homosexual agenda" and responded "I do have things I would like to see adopted on behalf of LGBT people: they include the right to marry the individual of our choice; the right to serve in the military to defend our country; and the right to a job based solely on our own qualifications.[23][24] I acknowledge that this is an agenda, but I do not think that any self-respecting radical in history would have considered advocating people's rights to get married, join the army, and earn a living as a terribly inspiring revolutionary platform."[24]
Frank's stance on outing gay Republicans has been called the "Frank Rule" whereby a closeted person who uses their power, position, or notoriety to hurt LGBT people can be outed.[25] The issue became relevant during the Mark Foley scandal of 2006, during which Frank clarified his position on HBO's Real Time with Bill Maher: "I think there's a right to privacy. But the right to privacy should not be a right to hypocrisy. And people who want to demonize other people shouldn't then be able to go home and close the door and do it themselves."[26]

[edit] Medical marijuana
In Congress, Frank is an ardent supporter of medical marijuana. He was the author of the States' Rights to Medical Marijuana Act (H.R. 2592), an attempt to stop federal government from intervening with states' medical marijuana laws.[27] Frank consistently voted for the Hinchey-Rohrabacher amendment, annually proposed by Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) and Maurice Hinchey (D-NY), that would prohibit the United States Department of Justice from prosecuting medical marijuana patients.[28] As of March 2008, he is trying to pass the Personal Use of Marijuana by Responsible Adults Act of 2008 (HR 5843), which would decriminalize small amounts of the drug.[29] Frank commenting on legislation to remove federal criminal penalties for possession of small amounts of marijuana for personal use stated "In a free society a large degree of human activity is none of the government's business. We should make criminal what's going to hurt other people and other than that we should leave it to people to make their own choices."[30]

[edit] Online gambling rights
Frank has also partnered with Ron Paul in support of online gambling rights. In 2006, both strongly opposed H.R. 4777, the Internet Gambling Prohibition and Enforcement Act, and H.R. 4411, the Goodlatte-Leach Internet Gambling Prohibition Act.[31][32] To restore online gambling rights, in 2007 Frank sponsored H.R. 2046, the Internet Gambling Regulation and Enforcement Act.[33] This bill would have established licensing and regulation of online gaming sites. It provided for age verification and protections for compulsive gamblers. In 2008, he and Paul introduced H.R. 5767, the Payment Systems Protection Act, a bill that sought to place a moratorium on enforcement of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act while the United States Treasury Department and the Federal Reserve defined "unlawful Internet gambling". As a result of these efforts, Frank (who does not gamble) has become a hero to poker players and online gamblers, including many Republicans.[34]

[edit] Free speech
In 2006, Frank was one of only three Representatives to oppose the Respect for America's Fallen Heroes Act, which restricted protests (notably those of Fred Phelps' Westboro Baptist Church) at soldiers' funerals. He opposed the bill, which passed unanimously in the Senate, on civil liberties and constitutional grounds. Frank said of the vote, "I think it’s very likely to be found unconstitutional. It’s true that when you defend civil liberties you are typically defending people who do obnoxious things... You play into their hand when you let them provoke you into overdoing it. I don’t want these thugs to [make the] claim [that] America is hypocritical."[35]

[edit] Abortion
Frank has a 100% rating from NARAL.[36] He voted against the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act[37], against the Unborn Victims of Violence Act[38] and against the criminalization of the transportation of minors across state lines by non-family members to circumvent local abortion laws.[39]

[edit] Military spending
As of the 111th Congress, Frank is advocating a 25 percent reduction in the overall Military budget of the United States. "The math is compelling: if we do not make reductions approximating 25 percent of the military budget starting fairly soon, it will be impossible to continue to fund an adequate level of domestic activity...," wrote Frank. He claimed that such a significant reduction would have no effect on the United States' ability to defend itself. "If," he said, "beginning one year from now, we were to cut military spending by 25 percent from its projected levels, we would still be immeasurably stronger than any combination of nations with whom we might be engaged."[40] The U.S. military budget is almost equivalent to the rest of the world's defense spending combined, and is over eight times larger than that of China, the next biggest spender.[41]

[edit] House Financial Services Committee

[edit] Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac
In 2003, while the ranking Democrat on the Financial Services Committee, Frank opposed a Bush administration proposal for transferring oversight of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac from Congress and the Department of Housing and Urban Development to a new agency that would be created within the Treasury Department. The proposal reflected the administration's belief that Congress "neither has the tools, nor the stature" for adequate oversight. Frank stated, "These two entities...are not facing any kind of financial crisis.... The more people exaggerate these problems, the more pressure there is on these companies, the less we will see in terms of affordable housing."[42] The two companies, which together own or back more than half the home mortgages in the US became "hobbled" by loan defaults.[43] Frank clarified in 2009 that Fannie and Freddie were not in crisis at the time and many financial institutions, like Lehman Brothers, also fell into crisis from 2003 to 2008.[44]
Conservative groups criticized Frank for campaign contributions totaling $42,350 between 1989 and 2008. They claim the donations from Fannie and Freddie influenced his support of their lending programs, and they blame Frank for not playing a stronger role in reforming the institutions in the years leading up to the Economic crisis of 2008.[45][46] Frank's former partner, Herb Moses, was an executive at Fannie from 1991 to 1998, where Moses helped develop many of Fannie’s affordable housing and home improvement lending programs. In 1991, Frank pushed for reduced restrictions on two- and three-family home mortgages. During the time that Frank was in a relationship with Moses, he blocked tougher regulations on the banking companies while voting for the Government Sponsored Housing Enterprises Financial Safety and Soundness Act of 1991 and the Housing and Community Development Act of 1992.[47] Frank and Moses' relationship ended around the same time Moses left the company.[48]
In a response to these criticisms Frank pointed out that "during twelve years of Republican rule no reform was adopted regarding Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. In 2007, a few months after I became the Chairman, the House passed a strong reform bill; we sought to get the [Bush] administration’s approval to include it in the economic stimulus legislation in January of 2008; and finally got it passed and onto President Bush’s desk in July 2008. Twelve years of Republican rule produced no reform of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. We were able to adopt it in nineteen months, and we could have done it much quicker if the [Bush] administration had cooperated."[49] In 2009 Frank again responded to what he called "wholly inaccurate efforts by Republicans to blame Democrats, and [me] in particular" for the subprime mortgage crisis which is linked to the financial crisis of 2007-2009.[44] He outlined his efforts to reform these institutions and add regulations but was thwarted by Republican efforts with the main exception a bill with Republican Mike Oxley that died because of opposition from President Bush.[44] Once control was turned over to Democrats, Frank was able to push through the Federal Housing Reform Act (H.R. 1427) and the Mortgage Reform and Anti-Predatory Lending Act (H.R. 3915) both in 2007.[44] Frank also pointed out the neglect of overlooking the Republican-led Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act of 1999, opposed by Frank), which removed the wall between commercial and investment banks.[44] The statute, which repealed part of the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933, has been criticized for having contributed to the proliferation of the complex and opaque financial instruments which are at the heart of the crisis.[50]

[edit] Chair of the House Financial Services Committee

Congressmen Ellison & Frank at Financial Services Field Hearing on Home Foreclosures in Minneapolis.
As chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, beginning in 2007, Frank "sits at the center of power".[9] Frank has been a critic of aspects of the Federal Reserve system, partnering with some Republicans in opposition to some policies.[51] Frank says that he and Republican Congressman Ron Paul "first bonded because we were both conspicuous nonworshipers at the Temple of the Fed and of the High Priest Alan Greenspan.”[51]
Frank has been involved in mortgage foreclosure bailout issues.[52] In 2008 Frank supported passage of the American Housing Rescue & Foreclosure Prevention Act intended to protect thousands of homeowners from foreclosure.[9] This law, H.R. 3221, was one of the most important and complex issues on which he worked.[9][53] Frank in an August 2007 op-ed piece in Financial Times wrote "In the debate between those who believe in essentially unregulated markets and others who hold that reasonable regulation diminishes market excesses without inhibiting their basic function, the subprime situation unfortunately provides ammunition for the latter view."[54]
Frank was also instrumental in the passage of H.R. 5244, the Credit Cardholders’ Bill of Rights Act of 2008, a measure that drew praise from editorial boards and consumer advocates.[55][56][57]
In 2007 Frank co-sponsored legislation to reform the Section 202 refinancing program, which is for affordable housing for the elderly, and Section 811 disabled programs.[citation needed] Frank has been a chief advocate of the National Housing Trust Fund[23], which was created as part of the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 and was the first affordable housing program to be enacted by the Congress since 1990.[58]

[edit] Personal life
Frank resides in a studio apartment complex in Newton, Massachusetts. His boyfriend, Jim Ready, 39, is a surfing enthusiast whom Frank met during a gay political fund raiser in Maine, where Ready still lives.[10] His sister, Ann Lewis, served as a senior adviser in Hillary Clinton's 2008 presidential campaign.
Frank came out as gay in 1987, "prompted in part by increased media interest in his private life...."[3][note 1] Frank's announcement had little impact on his electoral prospects.[59] Another Congressman from Massachusetts, Gerry Studds, became the first openly gay federal legislator in 1983 when he was outed.[3]

[edit] Bibliography
Financing Foreign Aid: A Case Study in the Budgetary Process. (1962)
Budget for a Strong America (1989)
Speaking Frankly: What's Wrong with the Democrats and how to Fix it (1992)

[edit] Notes
^ Frank, who was elected to the House in 1980, was the first gay congressional representative to come out on his own. Congressman Gerry Studds had been the only openly gay federal legislator, having survived the revelation in 1983 that he had had a relationship with a 17-year-old male page a decade earlier during a Congressional sex scandal.

EXCLUSIVE: AIG chiefs pressed to donate to Dodd
$160,000 streamed in as senator gained power on banking committee
By (Contact) and (Contact) Monday, March 30, 2009

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As Democrats prepared to take control of Congress after the 2006 elections, a top boss at the insurance giant American International Group Inc. told colleagues that Sen. Christopher J. Dodd was seeking re-election donations and he implored company executives and their spouses to give.
The message in the Nov. 17, 2006, e-mail from Joseph Cassano, AIG Financial Products chief executive, was unmistakable: Mr. Dodd was "next in line" to be chairman of the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee, which oversees the insurance industry, and he would "have the opportunity to set the committee's agenda on issues critical to the financial services industry.
"Given his seniority in the Senate, he will also play a key role in the Democratic Majority's leadership," Mr. Cassano wrote in the message, obtained by The Washington Times.

Mr. Dodd's campaign quickly hit pay dirt, collecting more than $160,000 from employees and their spouses at the AIG Financial Products division (AIG-FP) in Wilton, Conn., in the days before he took over as the committee chairman in January 2007. Months later, the senator transferred the donations to jump-start his 2008 presidential bid, which later failed.
Now, two years later, Mr. Dodd has emerged as a central figure in the government's decision to let executives at the now-failing AIG collect more than $218 million in bonuses, according to the Connecticut attorney general - even as the company was receiving billions of dollars in assistance from the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). He acknowledged that he slipped a provision into legislation in February that authorized the bonuses, but said the Treasury Department asked him to do it.
The decision has generated national outrage and put the Obama administration into the position of trying to collect the bonuses after they were distributed. It also endangers Mr. Dodd's re-election chances in 2010 as his popularity tumbles in his home state.
Despite all the claims that Washington has changed, the tale of Mr. Dodd's lucrative political ties to AIG is a fresh reminder that special interests continue to use donations and fundraising to sow good will with powerful lawmakers like Mr. Dodd.
"The message seems clear: The boss says I want you to support the senator," said Sheila Krumholz, executive director of the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics, which studies political fundraising and ethics. "And I think the employees got the message."
Continue reading 123Next

Senator Chris Dodd: Incompetent Criminal or Criminally Incompetent?
I am not just being rhetorical or cute with that headline. Since January, 2007 Senator Dodd has been Chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs. Prior to that he was the ranking minority member. He is the regulators regulator, this massive fraud happened on his watch. See our post from last year, below.Following up on "Will Obama, McCain, Dodd Return Contributions From AIG Employees?"comes this, from ZeroHedge:
Chris Dodd has taken Zero Hedge's advice and has decided to refund his campaign contributions from not only criminals with a record, and destroyers of the free market such as Joe Cassano but everyone else at AIG. Seems the Connecticut Democrat had received over $100,000 from a dozen AIG workers, which include Douglas Poling, of Fairfield; Christopher Phole, of New Canaan; Steven Pike, of Stamford; Robert Powell, of Westport; Joseph Rooney, of Fairfield; Gregory Ruffa, of Darien; Christian Toft, of Weston; Steven Wagar, of Norwalk; Jonathan Liebergall, of New Canaan; Leonid Shekhtman, of Redding; and James Haas, of Fairfield. Three of these executives, Poling, Haas and Liebergall, were outed as possible recipients of bonuses on Wednesday. The Connecticut post missed Joe Cassano, maybe because his CT house is only his second residence.However this may be the least of Dodd's transgressions. Yesterday the uber-conflicted Democrat for the first time openly talked about his role in determining AIG's bonuses (of course, not at all influenced by campaign donations).
Sen. Chris Dodd for the first time Wednesday acknowledged he was instrumental in creating legislation that cleared the way for disgraced executives at taxpayer-rescued AIG to walk away with hundreds of millions of dollars in bonuses.Dodd will have a lot of explaining to do to the one or two voters he may still have left.This is not the first time Dodd has found himself in this position of pillorying a corporate villain in one breath and in the next defending himself from claims he's too cozy with the same miscreant....MORE*Yesterday we saw that the Senator was the number one recipient of AIG's largesse. Last year, in "Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, Social Purpose and Bribes (FNM; FRE)" we saw the top recipients of Fannie Mae's loot:
...Top Recipients of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Campaign Contributions, 1989-2008
1. Dodd, Christopher J, D-CT2. Kerry, John, D-MA3. Obama, Barack, D-IL4. Clinton, Hillary, D-NY
It is starting to look like this guy is bought and paid for by the same people who dumped this flaming bag of shit on America's doorstep, costing us Trillions and sticking us with a bill that won't be paid off for three generations.
Posted by climateer at 8:13 AM

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William J. Jefferson
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Bill Jefferson

Member of the U.S. House of Representativesfrom Louisiana's 2nd district
In officeJanuary 3, 1991 – January 3, 2009
Preceded by
Lindy Boggs
Succeeded by
Joseph Cao
March 14, 1947 (1947-03-14) (age 62)Lake Providence, Louisiana
Political party
Andrea Jefferson
New Orleans, Louisiana
Alma mater
Southern University, Harvard University, Georgetown University
William Jennings "Bill" Jefferson (born March 14, 1947) is an American politician from the U.S. state of Louisiana. He served as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives for nine terms from 1991 to 2009. He represented Louisiana's 2nd congressional district, which includes much of the greater New Orleans area. He was Louisiana's first black congressman since the end of Reconstruction.[1] Suspecting him of bribery, the FBI raided his Congressional offices in May 2006, but he was re-elected later that year. On June 4, 2007, a federal grand jury indicted Jefferson on sixteen charges related to corruption.[2] Jefferson was defeated by Republican Joseph Cao on December 6, 2008[3], being the most senior Democrat to lose re-election that year.
1 Early life and career
2 Local influence
3 Corruption investigation
3.1 Former aides' guilty pleas
3.2 Congressional office raid
3.3 Stripped of committee membership
4 2006 election
5 Indictment
6 2008 election
7 Electoral history
8 Footnotes
9 External links

[edit] Early life and career
Jefferson was born in Lake Providence, a small village in East Carroll Parish in far northeastern Louisiana, where he and his eight brothers and sisters worked alongside their father, who was a farmer and a heavy-equipment operator for the Army Corps of Engineers. The Jeffersons were among the few African-American families in the area who actually owned their land (as opposed to sharecropping), which gave them a certain degree of respectability in the community. Nonetheless, he grew up in an environment of strong poverty.[4]
Though neither of his parents had graduated from high school, Jefferson in 1969 received a bachelor's degree from Southern University, where he had participated in Army ROTC; in 1969 he led a protest against substandard campus facilities and negotiated a resolution of the complaint with then-Governor John McKeithen. On graduation from Southern University he was commissioned a second lieutenant in the United States Army and served in a reserve capacity until 1975.[5] He earned a law degree from Harvard University in 1972 and an LLM in Taxation from Georgetown University Law Center in 1996. In 1972 and 1973 Jefferson began the practice of law while initially serving as a clerk for Judge Alvin B. Rubin of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana. From 1973 to 1975, he was a legislative assistant to U.S. Senator J. Bennett Johnston, Jr., of Louisiana. He moved to New Orleans in 1976 and was elected to the Louisiana Senate in 1979, where he served until 1990. He twice unsuccessfully ran for New Orleans mayor, first challenging Dutch Morial in the election of 1982, and then being defeated by Sidney Barthelemy in the mayoral runoff of 1986.[6] During the 1982 mayoral race, Morial attacked Jefferson by calling him "Dollar Bill"--a nickname which has stuck to this day. Still, Jefferson was considered a rising star in Louisiana politics, with some even suggesting he would be his state's first black governor.[4]
In 1990, midway through his third term in the state senate, Jefferson ran in the jungle primary for Louisiana's 2nd congressional district seat after 10-term incumbent Lindy Boggs announced her retirement. He finished first in the seven-candidate field with 24 percent of the vote. In the runoff, he defeated Marc Morial, the son of Dutch Morial, with 52 percent of the vote. He was reelected seven times.
In the House, Jefferson joined the Congressional Black Caucus.[7]
Jefferson ran for governor in the 1999 jungle primary, and was the de facto "official" Democratic candidate. However, he lost badly to incumbent Republican Mike Foster, tallying only 29.5 percent of the vote and carrying only New Orleans (which is coextensive with Orleans Parish).

[edit] Local influence
Jefferson and his family controlled one of the most sophisticated and effective get-out-the-vote organizations in South Louisiana: the Progressive Democrats. In 2002, their support helped elect Jefferson's protégée Renée Gill Pratt as a Councilmember. Jefferson's daughter Jalila failed to succeed Pratt as a Representative in the Louisiana State House. Jefferson's Progressive Democrats organization also contributed to the election of Jefferson's sister Betty, as a municipal assessor, in 1998, 2002 and 2006. New Orleans politics substantially changed after Hurricane Katrina in 2005, with many former voters no longer in the city.
A few days after Hurricane Katrina hit, Jefferson used a National Guard detachment to recover personal effects and belongings from his home.[8] After the truck in which he and the detachment traveled became stuck, the Guard helicopter aided Jefferson's party while rescue operations where still ongoing.

[edit] Corruption investigation
The investigation began in mid-2005, after an investor alleged $400,000 in bribes were paid through a company maintained in the name of Jefferson's spouse and children. The money came from a tech company named iGate, Inc., of Louisville, Kentucky, and in return, it is alleged, Jefferson would help iGate's business. Jefferson was to persuade the U.S. Army to test iGate's broadband two-way technology and other iGate products; use his efforts to influence high-ranking officials in Nigeria, Ghana, and Cameroon; and meet with personnel of the Export-Import Bank of the United States, in order to facilitate potential financing for iGate business deals in those countries.[9]
On 30 July 2005, Jefferson was videotaped by the FBI receiving $100,000 worth of $100 bills in a leather briefcase at the Ritz-Carlton hotel in Arlington, Virginia.[10] Jefferson told an investor, Lori Mody, who was wearing a wire, that he would need to give Nigerian Vice President Atiku Abubakar $500,000 "as a motivating factor" to make sure they obtained contracts for iGate and Mody's company in Nigeria.[11]

New Orleans Mardi Gras float satirizing "Dollar" Bill Jefferson à la Millionaire
A few days later, on 3 August 2005, FBI agents raided Jefferson's home in Northeast Washington and, as noted in an 83-page affidavit filed to support a subsequent raid on his Congressional office, "found $90,000 of the cash in the freezer, in $10,000 increments wrapped in aluminum foil and stuffed inside frozen-food containers." Serial numbers found on the currency in the freezer matched serial numbers of funds given by the FBI to their informant.
Late on the night of 2006 May 20, FBI agents executed a search warrant[12] at Jefferson's office in the Rayburn House Office Building. This is "believed to be the first-ever FBI raid on a Congressional office,"[13] raising concerns that it could "set a dangerous precedent that could be used by future administrations to intimidate or harass a supposedly coequal branch of the government." The raid led to an irony that one of Democrat Jefferson's staunchest defenders, in the turf battle between between the FBI and Congress, became Dennis Hastert, who was Speaker of the House and a Republican.[14]
The affidavit used to support these raids alleged:
The FBI videotaped Jefferson receiving a stock certificate from Mody for a company set up in Nigeria to promote iGate's technology. Jefferson predicted the deal would generate $200 million annually after five years.
Jefferson told Mody that he wanted a similar financial stake in the business in Ghana.
Jefferson sought $10 million in financing from Mody to take over iGate and install "confidants" on the new board. In two payments, Mody wired $89,225 to the ANJ Group LLC, a company controlled by Jefferson's family.
Jefferson lent $4,800 of the money Mody gave him to an unnamed congressional aide. Another $4,900 was given back to the FBI by one of Jefferson's attorneys.
The FBI claims it has uncovered "at least seven other schemes in which Jefferson sought things of value in return for his official acts."

[edit] Former aides' guilty pleas
In January 2006, Brett M. Pfeffer, a former aide to Jefferson, implicated him in a corruption scheme involving an Internet company being set up in Nigeria. Pfeffer was president of an investment company in McLean, Virginia. In return for political support for the deal, Jefferson had legal work directed toward the Jefferson family's operations. It was also said that a daughter of Jefferson was put on retainer of the Virginia investment company to the tune of $5,000 a month. Jefferson is said to have arranged for his family a 5 percent to 7 percent ownership stake in the Nigerian internet company. On 2006 January 11 in federal court in Alexandria, Virginia, Pfeffer pled guilty to charges of conspiracy and aiding and abetting bribery of a public official.[15] On May 26, he was sentenced to eight years.[16]
On 2006 May 3 Vernon Jackson, 53, CEO of Louisville, Kentucky, based iGate Inc., pled guilty to bribery of a public official and conspiracy to bribe a public official, during a plea hearing in U.S. District Court. According to the Associated Press, "court documents make clear that Congressman William Jefferson (Democrat-Louisiana) is the accused congressman, without naming him." Jackson's plea bargain requires his cooperation in the ongoing investigation against the congressman he admits bribing. The total amount of the bribes is between $400,000 and $1 million, according to court documents of the Jackson proceeding.[17] On September 8, Jackson was sentenced to 7 years and 3 months in jail.[18]

[edit] Congressional office raid
The raid of Jefferson's office set off a series of political events. Jefferson immediately challenged the action in federal court. House Speaker Dennis Hastert and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi issued "a rare joint statement demanding that the FBI return the documents and saying that Jefferson then should cooperate more fully with the investigation."[19] "Many Republicans and Democrats contend that the unprecedented raid on a congressional office was unduly aggressive and may have breached the constitutional separation of powers between the executive and legislative branches of government that are meant to shelter lawmakers from administrative intimidation."[20] Tensions escalated to the point where, according to AP, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, his deputy Paul McNulty, and possibly FBI Director Robert Mueller "were said to be ready to quit if the Justice Department was asked to return the Jefferson documents . . . [while the] House was threatening to go after the Justice Department's budget."[21]
On May 25, President Bush stepped in, taking the extraordinary step of "directing the Department of Justice to seal all the materials recovered from Congressman Jefferson's office for the next 45 days and not to allow access to anyone involved in the investigation."[22] Representative James Sensenbrenner, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, began to hold hearings—called "Reckless Justice: Did the Saturday Night Raid of Congress Trample the Constitution?"—on the "profoundly disturbing" questions that Sensenbrenner said the Justice Department's actions raised.
The FBI, in answering Jefferson's complaint of the raid, attached an FBI agent's affidavit claiming that the raid was necessary because, while the FBI was searching Jefferson's home in August, Jefferson tried to "surreptitiously remove" documents.[23]
An ABC News poll released 1 June 2006 found 86% of Americans supported the FBI's right to search congressional offices when they obtain a warrant.[24]
On 2006 July 10, Chief Judge Thomas F. Hogan for the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, ruled the FBI raid on Jefferson's office was legal,[25] rejecting the claim, of both Jefferson and the Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group of the United States House of Representatives, that the search violated the Constitution's Speech or Debate Clause, separation of powers principle, and the Fourth Amendment. Chief Judge Hogan, in a 28-page ruling, acknowledged that the "facts and questions of law presented here are indeed unprecedented," but wrote that it is "well-established" that a Congressman is "generally bound to the operation of the criminal laws as are ordinary persons," and the Speech or Debate Clause does not "make Members of Congress super-citizens, immune from criminal responsibility.'"[26] Hogan, in his conclusion, wrote:
"The existing broad protections of the Speech or Debate Clause – absolute immunity from prosecution or suit for legislative acts and freedom from being 'questioned' about those acts (including privilege from the testimonial act of producing documents in response to a subpoena) – satisfy the fundamental purpose of the Clause to protect the independence of the legislature. The Court declines to extend those protections further, holding that the Speech or Debate Clause does not shield Members of Congress from the execution of valid search warrants. Congressman Jefferson's interpretation of the Speech or Debate privilege would have the effect of converting every congressional office into a taxpayer-subsidized sanctuary for crime. Such a result is not supported by the Constitution or judicial precedent and will not be adopted here. See Williamson v. United States, 28 S. Ct. at 167 ('[T]he laws of this country allow no place or employment as a sanctuary for crime.') (quotation omitted).[27]
Later, however, in that same month, a three-judge appellate panel unanimously overruled Hogan's decision and affirmed that the Department of Justice could not review Jefferson's files until Jefferson had seen what files were taken and which of those pertained to his work as a legislator. The appellate court directed that Hogan, the judge who originally authorized the controversial search and seizure, should ascertain whether Jefferson's claims of legislative privilege extended to specific seized files that the lawmaker might cite.[28] On March 31, 2008, the United States Supreme Court denied further review.[29]

[edit] Stripped of committee membership
After months of refusing to deal with the Jefferson scandal amid rising public outrage, on 2006 May 24 House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi publicly requested Jefferson's immediate resignation from the House Ways and Means Committee, but he declined to step down.[30] Although Mel Watt, then chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, declared the strong support of the caucus for Jefferson it has since been reported that two prominent members of the caucus—John Lewis (D-GA) and Charles B. Rangel (D-NY)—played major roles in the campaign to force Jefferson to step down.[31]
On 2006 June 15, House Democrats voted to strip Jefferson of his committee assignment while the federal bribery investigation continued. The intra-party vote passed 99 to 58. Some have reported that the vote was passed as a result of Democrats who were determined to make an election-year point about ethics. The full House, which is the only group with the power actually to remove Jefferson, then stripped him of his seat on the committee on June 16 in a voice vote without debate. Jefferson had offered to step aside temporarily if the Democratic caucus established a rule concerning cases like his and if his seat went to Rep. Charlie Melancon (D-LA). This offer was rejected by House Democratic leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi.[32]

[edit] 2006 election
Main article: United States House of Representatives elections in Louisiana, 2006
In the ensuing 2006 election cycle for Louisiana's 2nd congressional district, eight Democrats, three Republicans, and one Libertarian challengers stood for election against Jefferson.[33]
A significant number of the district’s former voters have settled in new places across the United States as a result of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
None of the candidates obtained more than 50% of the vote on the first ballot (November 7, 2006), forcing a runoff. The two candidates who survived the first ballot were both African-American Democrats: Jefferson got 30% of the vote, and State Representative Karen Carter, who enjoyed support from the Louisiana Democratic Party’s establishment, picked up nearly all endorsements from local politicians and the local press and gathered 22% of the vote.[34] Carter was Jefferson's first credible challenger since his initial run for Congress.
Political commentators predicted an easy victory for Carter on the second ballot (to be held on 2006 December 9).[35] In the last week of campaign, however, Jefferson Parish Sheriff Harry Lee, a law and order Democrat, urged voters not to vote for Carter. In response to Carter's criticism of Gretna police officers and Jefferson Parish deputies, who had blocked the Crescent City Connection and prevented evacuees from fleeing New Orleans in the aftermath of Katrina, Lee mailed out 25,000 fliers and made public statements attacking Carter. With this background the situation was particularly emotional and visceral as Orleans Parish is predominantly black and Jefferson Parish predominantly white (although not the part of Jefferson Parish in Louisiana's 2nd congressional district).[36]
Voter turnout dwindled from 24.15% to 16.25%. While residents of the city of New Orleans gave Jefferson a slight majority over Carter, (51% to 49%), the Jefferson Parish share of the district voted for Jefferson by a staggering 71% to 29%, clearly swinging the election in his favor.
Following Jefferson's reelection, Speaker-elect Nancy Pelosi announced that Jefferson would not regain his seat on the Ways and Means Committee as long as he is not "cleared of wrongdoing in an ongoing federal corruption probe".[37]

[edit] Indictment
On 2007 June 4 Jefferson was indicted on 16 charges of corruption by a federal grand jury. On 2007 June 8, Jefferson pled not guilty to the charges. After the hearing, Jefferson said, "I am absolutely innocent of the charges that have been leveled against me. I'm going to fight my heart out to clear my name." He further explained: "The $90,000 was the FBI's money. The FBI gave it to me as part of its plan — part of their plan — that I would give it to the Nigerian vice president, but I did not do that. When all the facts are understood, I trust that I will be vindicated."[38] The FBI has denied working with Jefferson.
Jefferson appealed the indictment, on 14 of the 16 counts, by claiming "legislative immunity provided by the Speech or Debate Clause of the Constitution"; in November 2008, however, Judge Robert King rejected the appeal and upheld the indictment on all 16 counts.[39][40] Jefferson's 4th Circuit Court of Appeals trial had originally been set to begin on 2008 December 2,[41] but was postponed until 2009 January 15 (after the 2008 December 6 general election in Louisiana's 2nd congressional district). Jefferson's attorneys sought "issuance of a mandate" in petitioning the U.S. Supreme Court to oblige postponement of Jefferson's trial by lower courts. Quoted by Bruce Alpert of the Times-Picayune Washington Bureau, Jefferson's lawyers based their petition for postponement in part on an argument that "Once a trial takes place, the injury caused by exposure to trial cannot be undone, even if he [Jefferson] is acquitted or a conviction is subsequently reversed" (the "injury" being in the context of Jefferson's 2008 December 6 election loss to Anh "Joseph" Cao). As of 2008 December 24, a status hearing continued to be scheduled by U.S. District Court Judge T. S. Ellis III, sitting in Alexandria, Virginia, for 2009 January 15 when the schedule or other specific future of the case would be promulgated. The federal prosecutors disputed the request for postponement as merely a stalling maneuver which would facilitate "further prejudice" against "not a close case" according to prosecutor Mark Lytle.[42]

[edit] 2008 election
In 2008, Jefferson sought re-election. Seven Democrats challenged him for the seat in the Democratic primary.[43]
In the 2008 October 4 Democratic primary, opposition to Jefferson was split among six contenders. Some of the challengers made strong showings in their base neighborhoods but failed to garner much support in other parts of the district. Jefferson ran second, third, or even fourth in many precincts, but his 25 percent total was enough to give him a plurality and to send him into the runoff primary, where he faced Helena Moreno, a former TV newscaster, on November 4. Aided by overwhelming support from African-American voters on the same date as the presidential candidacy of Barack Obama drew them to the polls in unprecedented numbers, Jefferson won the Democratic nomination in the congressional party primary which barred the district's 41 thousand Republicans and many of its 84 thousand other voters not registered as Democrats.[44][45] Jefferson won the November 4 Democratic runoff.[46]
The general election round occurred on 2008 December 6. Jefferson faced Republican candidate Anh "Joseph" Cao, Green Party candidate Malik Rahim, and Libertarian Party candidate Gregory Kahn. An earlier candidate, independent Jerry Jacobs, withdrew.[47]
Jefferson was defeated in the general election on 2008 December 6 in a major upset by Republican nominee Cao,[3] who won by three percentage points. He thus became only the third Democratic incumbent since the end of Reconstruction to lose to a Republican at the federal level in Louisiana.
Jefferson's loss evoked a sensation because of the overwhelmingly Democratic nature of the district; with a Cook Partisan Voting Index of D+28, it is the third-most Democratic district in the South. Democrats usually win local and state races in landslides, and Barack Obama carried the district with 72 percent of the vote in the 2008 presidential election.
Jefferson became only the third African-American U.S. Representative to be defeated in a general election.[48] According to Stephanie Grace, in a Times-Picayune column on 2009 March 19, Jefferson's supporters have been attempting to rehabilitate Jefferson by sending thousands of e-mails attacking Cao, U.S. Senator David Vitter, radio commentator Rush Limbaugh, and other Republicans but that still
Jefferson's quest for acquittal is the challenge of a lifetime. And no matter how many e-mails his remaining "friends" send out, vindication in the eyes of the voters will be even tougher.[49]



Blogger Kevin McGinty said...

Sorry Myron, but you lost me WAY back there...

April 8, 2009 at 3:21 PM  

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