Friday, June 12, 2009


One of the campaign slogans or pledges in the 2006 Congressional elections was that the Democrats were going to end the “culture of corruption” as practiced by the Republicans.

Well, since the Democrats did take over the majority in Congress, what has happened to this pledge since?

First off, let me state that “corruption” is not a Democrat or Republican phenomenon, as both parties are guilty of falling prey to its tentacles, and both have members who are or have been in prison serving time for acts of corruption while in office. Virtue or honesty is not the sole provenance of either party. I plan on writing about and exposing this endemic corruption in future postings, naming both Democrats and Republicans in the process.

Let’s start with one case that nobody seems to be aware of - the case of Representative Alan B. Mollohan (D-WV). He’s an obscure Congressman from West Virginia (but well known in his home state) who came into the Congress in 1983 with a modest net worth and today his net worth is in the millions of dollars. In fact, to be specific, since 2000, Mollohan’s real estate holdings and other assets had increased from $562,000 to at least $6.3 million by 2004. How could an “ordinary” Congressman earning a modest salary, get into that rarefied atmosphere of living like a millionaire many times over? It wasn’t by inheritance. The “red flags” should’ve been raised a long time ago.

One way is by using the practice of putting “earmarks” in continuing resolutions originating in Congress. Over the past 14 years, Rep. Mollohan (D-WV) has earmarked $369 million in federal grants to his district for 254 separate projects and programs from 1997 to 2006, $250 million of that total was directed to five non-profit organizations that were erected by Rep. Mollohan, staffed by his friends and close associates, those organizations received the largest “earmarks” from Rep. Mollohan. During that same period, top-paid employees, board members and contractors of these Mollohan created organizations, gave at least $397,122 to Rep. Mollohan’s campaign and PAC’s (the facts and figures were supplied by CREW – Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington and Wikipedia).

Was there a quid pro quo for him receiving these monies? The “dormant” House Ethics Committee was supposed to be investigating these charges to see if there was a “pay to play” arrangement between the Congressman and his “contributing constituents”? The complaint was originally made in 2006. In addition, some questionable real estate deals he has made in West Virginia and South Carolina are also being investigated. He is charged with investing money, as a 50% partner, in a farm with a constituent who has been getting “earmarks” ($2.1 million) sponsored by Rep. Mollohan.

Is the fact that he is a Democrat in a Democrat controlled Congress have anything to do with the “snails pace” this investigation is taking, or are the charges bogus and don’t need to see the light of day? The heads of the House Ethics Committee are Chairwoman Zoe Lofgren, (D-CA), and Ranking member Jo Bonner (R-AL). Write them and ask them what’s the status of the investigation is so far?

The term “transparency” has been thrown about quite easily, since the Obama Administration came into power, so it will be interesting how transparent the powers-to-be will be in the case of Rep. Alan B. Mollohan (D-WV). Members of Congress tend to circle the wagons when one of their colleagues comes under scrutiny for acts that are against the protocols of that body. Maybe it’s because many of them could be accused of some the same misdeeds as Rep. Mollohan? The old expression, “where’s there smoke there’s fire” certainly can be applied in the case against Rep. Mollohan.

If these charges are true, this is one more example in the “quiver” of those shooting arrows into the target of corrupt career politicians, in their quest to have term limits for members of Congress. It seems the “Culture of Corruption” is alive and well in Wash. D.C., only this time the name of the party in power is different than before.

This is only the tip of the iceberg. Just recently, Republican Rep. Duke Cunningham (R-CA.), was found guilty of corruption and is now serving prison time. Present members of the Congress and Senate who are being investigated now are Sen. Chris Dodd (D-CT), Rep. Charlie Rangel (D-NY), and Rep. John Murtha (D-PA) et al. One thread seems to weave its way through these corruption charges, which is the granting of “earmarks” to benefit special interest constituents and the resulting “Kickbacks” to the politician by the beneficiaries of those earmarks. President Obama has said that he will do away with “earmarks”, I say don’t hold your breath as all these career politicians want to get reelected and granting “earmarks” guarantees a steady flow of campaign contributions to the politician..

Written by Chuck Lehmann

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Anonymous said...

Murtha is garbage. The man who was a Marine, in Vietnam, has certainly transitioned into a dirty politician hell bent on serving his own needs.
Rangel is also a disgrace to America. What a cheater. Yet that is means for rewards in Obamaville.

AlexGordon said...

Alex Gordon

What about our Congressman here in the 19th C.D., Robert Wexler. He has the nerve to take up residence for the past 12 years in the Wash. D.C. suburb of Potomac, Maryland. When he was caught not living in his district, he quickly rented a place as a phony residence. He claims Florida as his permanent residence and files his taxes using Florida, an income tax free state, thereby stiffing the State of Maryland of its rightful tax revenue. He also is being investigated for money laundering with his campaign PAC's. Are we that hard up that we must have an absentee Congressman to represent us in Congress? What a disgrace.

Mike M said...

He moved into the garage at his mother in laws house, yet the media won't say a word about it.