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September 05, 2006

Abramoff's Team Player - Cathy McMorris

There are so many good reasons for the folks in Washington's 5th CD to vote for Peter Goldmark - his integrity, his policy, his roots in the rural community, his intellectual capability and his charisma, to name but a few.  But increasingly we find reasons for the voters to turn Cathy McMorris out as well, separate from the excellent person we would be replacing her with.  Here's a powerful one: she is deeply mired in the immoral, illegal team that Jack Abramoff and Tom DeLay created as part of what will undoubtedly be known as the worst period of corruption in American politics.  And that is saying a lot, given that she has only been in Congress a year and a half. 

A diarist over at DailyKos, dengre, has been researching the complicated web of Abramoff's scandal team since 1999.  He has spent extensive time going through old Jack Abramoff files, documents and news clips.  He has identified 53 Congresscritters with ties to Jack Abramoff and the Slush Fund behind the Gingrich/DeLay/Bush K-Street Project.  Here's what he says about the list he created:

When it comes to this list I have focused on how Abramoff and the Republican Party spent the last eleven years protecting a system of sweatshops, human trafficking, force prostitution and forced abortion on the Commonwealth of North Mariana Islands (CNMI) for fun, power and profit. I want to remind folks that this GOP corruption is about more than ripping off casinos.

Dengre's Areas of Contact (multiple areas required to make the List):

  1. Money - Contributions directly from Jack and/or his team of lobbyists, the GOP slush fund Abramoff managed, or the GOP Leadership PAC donations, especially those funded by Abramoff   
  2. Staff Connections - Candidates who had staffers who went to work for Jack or who took trips paid for by Jack or who had staffers directly trained by Jack   
  3. The Public Record, including Billing Records and Emails - Candidates with publicly reported ties to Abramoff, most particularly those involved in travels to the Mariana Islands and the Indian affairs schemes
  4. Congressional Favors - Candidates who were part of DeLay's House Leadership, particularly those GOP leaders of the Resources Committee, the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, or the Appropriations Committee, and who were in a position to help Abramoff and DeLay in return for financial contributions

There are four categories of closeness to the Abramoff scandals.  The dirty dozen in the first category include Tom DeLay, Denny Haskert, Roy Blunt, Conrad Burns, Richard Pombo, Don Young of Alaska - you know the ones we've come to associate with Abramoff and his long-running corruption scandals.  The amazing this is that Cathy McMorris - freshman Congresscritter with a deeply religious background - shows up in Category 2 - Team Players, those folks who have many connections to Abramoff and were on his Team on Capital Hill.  That was pretty damned fast work on her part. 

Based on dengre's diary, I did some digging of my own.   Based on data released by the FEC on August 7, 2006, of the $378,148 received by McMorris so far in this election cycle, $57,709 came from GOP Leadership PACs - primarily money provided by the folks in Category 1 above, and from Ideology/Single Issue groups, including $12,455 from GOP Whip Roy Blunt's "Rely on Your Beliefs" PAC. 

That is all in addition to the money that McMorris receives from special interest groups.  The same FEC report lists $32,822 in contributions from Energy/Natural Resource companies and $25,500 from Health (read Pharmaceuticals).

Help turn her out.  Contribute to Peter Goldmark's campaign.

Posted by Lynn Allen on September 5, 2006 at 08:39 AM in Candidate Races, National and International Politics | Permalink


Additionally, Cathy had her office staff call Democrats in her district earlier this year and ask them to support Tom Delay, saying what a fine, decent man he was!

Posted by: paco and taco | Sep 6, 2006 12:07:59 PM

I bet she wishes she hadn't done that now. I suppose the good thing about her total sense of entitlement is that she is clearly getting blindsided by Goldmark's strong showing. I think he's going to win.

Posted by: Lynn | Sep 6, 2006 1:06:31 PM

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