Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Wash Post: The Abramoff Echo

Below is a good article from the Washington Post analyzing the Republican culture of corruption and whether or not the issue will go national:

DeWine is in a tough fight for a third term, and his race against Democratic Rep. Sherrod Brown is one that will test the potency of the corruption issue. National and state scandals have tarred members of Congress and even the governor, and Ohio is among the places where Republicans are most vulnerable to the charge that they are an entrenched party that has lost its ethical compass.

This will be the first election after a long and ripe season of Washington scandal. Disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff and his partners illegally exploited their ties to senior Republican lawmakers in the capital's most noxious influence-peddling scheme in a generation. Tom DeLay (R-Tex.), once the most powerful man in the House, resigned as majority leader and later left Congress after being indicted on charges of improper fundraising.

Certainly, this issue will be a major factor in isolated races. Evidence of its potential to affect the November elections came last week when Ralph Reed, former executive director of the Christian Coalition, lost the Republican primary for Georgia's lieutenant governor after getting pounded for his close relationship with Abramoff.

The politician most at risk is Robert W. Ney (R-Ohio), who has been identified as the accused but so far unindicted "Congressman A" in Abramoff's plea agreement. An indictment would hand a potentially lethal weapon to Democrat Zack Space in the traditionally Republican 18th District in central and eastern Ohio.

For the corruption issue to have national impact, politicians would be dislodged who are only in the vicinity of ethics controversies, rather than being central characters. In Montana, Sen. Conrad Burns (R) is apparently not under investigation but has been roasted in the news media by Democrat Jon Tester because of his ties to Abramoff. A former top aide to Burns worked with Abramoff's firm, and the senator received about $150,000 from Abramoff's lobbying team and clients.

Notice all the names I have bolded in the article above. They all have something in common; they are Republicans!

Ralph Reed's race in Georgia last week should have sent the message loud and clear to John Boehner and the rest of his do nothing companions that folks are fed up.

They want a government that is going to be honest, accountable, and trutsworthy--a total opposite of what we have now.

Voters are ready for change. A Democratic majority is upcoming.