Democrats have dropped their earlier efforts to tag the GOP with the a "corruption" label. Representative Jefferson's $90k in cold cash from his freezer certainly didn't help. But now, a Senate Democrat in a tight race has been shown to have given the appearance of corruption. The AP reports:
Washington Sen. Maria Cantwell helped arrange more than $11 million in federal money in the past year for projects benefiting clients of a lobbyist who is advising her re—election campaign and still owes her money from a personal loan.
Cantwell, a Democrat who is in a tight re—election race, has reported for years that former campaign manager Ron Dotzauer owes her between $15,000 and $50,000 for a personal loan predating her first Senate election in 2000. Dotzauer now runs a lobbying firm.
The loan was still listed as outstanding on the financial disclosure report Cantwell filed in May. The senator's office said Dotzauer continues to advise informally Cantwell's campaign as an unpaid adviser.
Since last fall, Cantwell has helped persuade Senate appropriators to set aside $9.6 million — known as "earmarks" in congressional parlance — for a dam project benefiting two clients of Dotzauer's firm and $2 million more for the biotechnology company Inologic also represented by his firm. [....]
Senate ethics rules require lawmakers to avoid even the appearance of a conflict of interest in taking official acts that benefit people with whom the senators have a personal financial interest.
Hat tip: Joseph Crowley
Thomas Lifson 9 08 06