Senator Domenici article in the Ruidoso News

Discussion in 'Politics & Religion' started by bigarrow, Mar 14, 2007.

  1. March 14, 2007 Ruidoso, NM


    Senator Domenici at least guilty of stupidity
    Ned Cantwell Looking Askance
    Article Launched: 03/13/2007 10:29:25 PM MDT
    Say it's not so. Go ahead, tell me Pope Benedict is going to become a Methodist. I can handle it.

    Send me a brochure that says Paris Hilton and Britney Spears are leading a summer camp for teenage girls, and I'll go along with it.

    You say Tiger Woods hits a banana ball, Dick Cheney has an open mind, Elvis was tone deaf, Hemingway couldn't write? Works for me.

    Just don't try to tell me our beloved Senator of 34 years, Pete Domenici, he of the pristine political past and solid national reputation for somehow being above it all, above all the nasty nitty gritty of the grimy world of politics - yes, that Pete, the hero of the New Mexico Republican party, is, gasp, involved up to his neck in an ethics flap.

    Indeed, such is the case.

    Political blogger Joe Monahan captured the mood:

    "More shock waves buffeted our Enchanted Land Wednesday as shocked observes tried to absorb the news that New Mex-ico political icon Pete Domenici has been forced to hire a criminal defense lawyer to defend himself before his colleagues in the U.S. attorney scandal."

    Should the political bloggers association give out awards for action verbs and snappy adjectives, my friend Joe picks up the plaque. But "scandal?" I don't know. Scandal is taking 18-year-old interns on overnights. Scandal is letting lobbyists buy you a house in return for favorable legislation.

    Here's what Pete did. He called U.S. Attorney David Iglesias before the November election. Domenici says the call was simply to inquire about the status of an investigation. Iglesias tells a different story. He says the Domenici call, and a similar one from Congresswoman Heather Wilson, were intended to pressure him to hasten an investigation that would bolster Wilson's reelection campaign.

    It may not be a scandal but is was dumb, plain dumb. It smells to high heaven. The Senator has since admitted such in a statement of apology that admitted no ethical violation but indicated mea culpa for the appearance of impropriety.

    One thing is sure. The episode has sullied Pete's reputation and maybe his future. Democrats are salivating as they search their ranks for someone who might now challenge this man once believed to be invulnerable.

    Iglesias has since been fired and he told a federal panel his ouster was political, that Domenici pressured him to bring indictments against prominent Democrats.

    Baloney, say others. They contend David Iglesias pretty much botched the job as U.S. Attorney, couldn't get things moving, needed to go. For his part, Domenici claims to have recommended Iglesias be replaced several months before the controversial call. That would seem to be strong evidence if the Senator can produce a letter or other evidence to back up his claim. We've not seen such at the time of this writing.

    Whatever the case, Pete Domenici has hired a big gun lawyer to represent him in an ethics investigation. Lawyering up, as they say, is not in itself indicative of anything but the fact the Senator recognizes the gravity of his situation. It's kind of like a New Mexico criminal suspect hooking up with attorney Gary Mitchell. You know the guy's in deep dodo.

    Speaking of dodo, Heather Wilson made the same type of call to Iglesias, and finds herself buffeted by those shock waves Joe Monahan noted. Stay tuned. Meanwhile...

    You were kidding about the Pope turning Methodist, right?

    Syndicated columnist Ned Cantwell - ncantwell@beyond-bb.com

    Pete is one of the few politicians I actually admire and respect now he gets into trouble. Oh well
     
  2. Another example of the media double standard. Democrats do this and it is called normal. Some incompetent US Attorney gets canned and looks for a scapegoat. Domenici is not my favorite senator but he can call the US Attorney just like any other citizen can. US Attorney is a political position, not a career prosecutor. They have no expectation of being isolated from political pressure if they foul up a high profile political prosecution.

    The sad fact is that in an election year, the US Attorneys managed to put an authentic american hero, Duke Cuningham, in prison but couldn't get a case going against a democrat congressman who they had on tape accepting a bribe and stashing the money in his freezer. That was after commandeering the National Guard to take him to his New Orleans house to get the stash.

    Unfortunatley, Bush didn't fire his longtime crony, US Attorney Johnny Sutton, who seems obssessed with putting Border Patrol agents and deputy sheriffs in prison for inconveniencing drug gangs and smugglers.
     
  3. What is Duke in prison for? For being an American hero? That's what your post sounds like.

    As for Dollar Bill Jefferson, I don't know. Maybe sometimes one has to heed people's will. In this case, they want a corrupt politician to represent them.

    BTW, the lawyer hired by Domenici is Duke's defense lawyer. Given his track record...
     
  4. aaa,

    You got to get your priorities straight. duke may have been a hero at one time but he took bribes, plain and simple. That is why he is in prison. Are you mad at the prosecutor because they put a repugniklan rep who was a thief in prison?
     
  5. of course a repugniklan supporter will call a thief a hero... what else can you expect from him/her?

    As for Bill Jefferson, the lady running against him ran a good campaign, but the voters of New Orleans decided that Bill was the guy they wanted. He has not been convicted in a court of law yet... while duke the thief cunningham has been.
     
  6. I'm not excusing Duke. All I'm saying is he was one of the most famous fighter jocks of the vietnam war. They still have stories about him on the History Channel. I'm not convinced that what he did was all that different from the usual Washington influence peddling. If he crossed the line, he's certainly paying a huge price.

    What I am objecting to is the Justice Department being unable to file a case against a demonstrably corrupt democrat, William Jefferson. The fact that he was reelected is irrelevant. I know that case is just the tip of the iceberg. I don't know if the problem is career prosecutors in the Justice Department being all democrats and dragging their feet on these cases or what. But I can understand why Domenici was upset. He had a right to be.

    Some of you have blinders on with regard to corruption. You are gleeful to see Duke in prison, but it doesn;t bother you at all that a politician's wife who knows noting about markets manages to clear $100,000 in no time trading cattle futures. How would that compare to Duke being a little too cozy with defense contractors? How did Hillary get a pass on that? Where was the moral outrage?
     
  7. You have to ask Ken Starr that question. AFAIK, Ken Starr is not one of the "career prosecutors in the Justice Department being all democrats."

    So why didn't Ken Starr bring a case against Hillary after years of investigation, tens of millions spent? You tell me.
     
  8. I believe the answer is that it wasn't part of what he was appointed to investigate.

    Investigating all Clinton corruption would require the entire resources of the Justice Department and decades to sort it all out. It was virtually impossible just to keep up with the contemporaneous corruption when he was in office. No one had time to go back to old stuff like the cattle "trading."
     
  9. This has got to be one of the biggest jokes around. The meaning of "it" was "part of what he was appointed to investigate," how?