Tuesday, February 27, 2007

For Reps, it's Graft; for Dems, they're Perks

Tom DeLay took a trip to Scotland paid for by lobbyists. It was considered graft. Now the Democrats are in power and they've decided to clean things up. They passed rules prohibiting lobbyists from paying for lawmaker's trips. Now the graft is gone. The only things left are perks. If you're receiving perks, it can't be graft.

So Congressman Hoyer's golf outing to Puerto Rico with lobbyists who contributed to a PAC that paid for Hoyer's trip is a perk. Congressman Thomas Carper's annual ski trip to Colorado paid for by $5,000 contributions from lobbyists is, likewise, a perk. Of course, rock concerts, $5,000 per lobbyist hunting and fishing trips, a California wine-tasting tour, golf tournaments, Broadway shows, and parties in Miami’s South Beach are all perks.

Of course not everything has been a perk. U.S. House members took trips in January that included airfare, meals and lodging from special interests in blatant violation of the rules. I guess these trips fell into the "grandfathered graft" category.

Thank goodness for Nancy Pelosi who cleaned up the corruption in Washington.

1 comment:

sirocco said...

Yeah, they cleaned up some of the rules, but the rules governing the manner in which a PAC can spend money haven't been touched.

I was familiar with Hoyer's golf outings, and I know he was toasted for it on a number of liberal sites as well. I hadn't heard about Carper's ski trip, but it sounds like it falls in the same category.