Where's the outrage?

On or about August 1st of 2005 Rep. William Jefferson (D-La.) was filmed accepting $100,000 in cash from a man wearing an FBI wire. Two days later, the FBI raided Rep. Jefferson's home and found most of the money tightly wrapped in aluminum foil in his freezer. This was the high point in a 14 month investigation involving allegations of influence peddling, bribe taking and other nefarious activities.

Almost a year later and after numerous attempts by the FBI to have Jefferson cooperate in the investigation, the FBI used an 83 page affidavit in obtaining a warrant to search Jefferson's office in the Rayburn Building. You get caught with $90,000 in bribe money and the FBI expects to find more incriminating evidence in your office? The search itself set of a storm of indignation on Capitol Hill. Not because Jefferson is an alleged thief who has sullied the reputation of lawmakers, but because the sanctity of the equal branch of government has been violated by the search.

In the meantime Jefferson stands for re-election and guess what? Dollar Bill gets returned to the scene of the crime. Now comes some even more bizarre goings on. With the changing of the majority guard in the house, Speaker Nancy Pelosi is now faced with the prospect of Jefferson sitting on the Ways and Means Committee. After repeated refusals of requests for him to resign from the committee and despite the efforts of the House Black Caucus to retain him, House Democrats voted 99-58 to strip him of his membership. It is rather a chilling result when you consider that 58 members of his party felt he was deserving of his seat after it became public that he was accepting cash.

Here we are 2 years and six months since Rep. Jefferson's film debut and the news today is not about him being indicted or going on trial. The news today is that the "
most ethical congress in history" will allow "Dollar Bill" to be appointed to the Homeland Security Committee.

Although Speaker Pelosi and House Democrats allowing Jefferson to have any kind of a role while this cloud hangs over him deserves ridicule, it is the Justice Department that is to blame.

The reasoning behind such a slow pace is explained in a piece from the New Orleans City Journal by Jeff Crouere:
"One staffer in the U.S. Attorney's office in the Eastern District of New Orleans confidentially predicts quick action in the Jefferson investigation after the election is over Dec. 9. Jefferson reportedly will be indicted right after the election regardless of whether he wins or loses. Usually, the federal government shies away from indicting a public official during the midst of a campaign because of the political implications".
My, how considerate of the government. I wonder just how much consideration you or I would get if we had accepted $100,000 from an informant wearing an FBI wire? I think being cuffed and carted off in a cruiser in front of friends, family or co-workers is the standard treatment for non-congressional alleged felons.

Well the election is long over and we have the specter of a suspected major security risk sitting on one of the most sensitive congressional committees and still no action by the Justice Department. What can be the reason? Are they being careful, are they just slow, or are they simply incompetent?
On or about August 1st of 2005 Rep. William Jefferson (D-La.) was filmed accepting $100,000 in cash from a man wearing an FBI wire. Two days later, the FBI raided Rep. Jefferson's home and found most of the money tightly wrapped in aluminum foil in his freezer. This was the high point in a 14 month investigation involving allegations of influence peddling, bribe taking and other nefarious activities.

Almost a year later and after numerous attempts by the FBI to have Jefferson cooperate in the investigation, the FBI used an 83 page affidavit in obtaining a warrant to search Jefferson's office in the Rayburn Building. You get caught with $90,000 in bribe money and the FBI expects to find more incriminating evidence in your office? The search itself set of a storm of indignation on Capitol Hill. Not because Jefferson is an alleged thief who has sullied the reputation of lawmakers, but because the sanctity of the equal branch of government has been violated by the search.

In the meantime Jefferson stands for re-election and guess what? Dollar Bill gets returned to the scene of the crime. Now comes some even more bizarre goings on. With the changing of the majority guard in the house, Speaker Nancy Pelosi is now faced with the prospect of Jefferson sitting on the Ways and Means Committee. After repeated refusals of requests for him to resign from the committee and despite the efforts of the House Black Caucus to retain him, House Democrats voted 99-58 to strip him of his membership. It is rather a chilling result when you consider that 58 members of his party felt he was deserving of his seat after it became public that he was accepting cash.

Here we are 2 years and six months since Rep. Jefferson's film debut and the news today is not about him being indicted or going on trial. The news today is that the "
most ethical congress in history" will allow "Dollar Bill" to be appointed to the Homeland Security Committee.

Although Speaker Pelosi and House Democrats allowing Jefferson to have any kind of a role while this cloud hangs over him deserves ridicule, it is the Justice Department that is to blame.

The reasoning behind such a slow pace is explained in a piece from the New Orleans City Journal by Jeff Crouere:
"One staffer in the U.S. Attorney's office in the Eastern District of New Orleans confidentially predicts quick action in the Jefferson investigation after the election is over Dec. 9. Jefferson reportedly will be indicted right after the election regardless of whether he wins or loses. Usually, the federal government shies away from indicting a public official during the midst of a campaign because of the political implications".
My, how considerate of the government. I wonder just how much consideration you or I would get if we had accepted $100,000 from an informant wearing an FBI wire? I think being cuffed and carted off in a cruiser in front of friends, family or co-workers is the standard treatment for non-congressional alleged felons.

Well the election is long over and we have the specter of a suspected major security risk sitting on one of the most sensitive congressional committees and still no action by the Justice Department. What can be the reason? Are they being careful, are they just slow, or are they simply incompetent?