Sunday, March 26, 2006

Hall of political shame

One of my least favorite things about politics is when partisans argue that they're all virtuous and the other side is entirely composed of scoundrels.

So I've decided to start a list of recent bad behavior by people all over the political spectrum. The next time someone you're arguing with comes up with a line like "Democrats are corrupt" or "Republicans are Nazis", simply refer them here. I'll post the link in the "Essays" section of the sidebar and update it regularly. If you've got someone you think should be included, let me know.

People are people. Every group has a certain number of bad apples. The "good vs. evil" trope is one of the most radicalizing forces in politics, IMO. If this list helps us move the debate away from such simplistic portrayals, good.

DEMOCRAT/LIBERAL
Rep. James Traficant, D-Ohio, expelled from Congress after being convicted of myriad corruption charges.
Sandy Berger,, former Clinton national security adviser, pleaded guilty to stealing and destroying classified documents from the National Archives.
Katie Barge and Lauren Weiner, aides to Sen. Charles Schumer, D.-N.Y., fired after illegally obtaining the credit report of Michael Steele, Lt. Governor of Maryland and a GOP Senate candidate.
Brett Pfeffer, former aide to Rep. William Jefferson, D-La. Pleaded guilty to demanding bribes and implicated Jefferson.
Rep. Cynthia McKinney,, D-Ga., for striking a Capitol police officer and then claiming to be the victim of racial bias.
Pennsylvania state Sen. Vincent Fumo, indicted on charges of defrauding taxpayers and charities out of $2 million by using state workers to do personal chores, including spying on his ex-wife.
Former Tennessee state Sen. John Ford (uncle of Harold Ford Jr.), convicted of bribery.
Rep. James McDermott, D-Wash., ordered to pay $700,000 for leaking an illegally obtained tape of a GOP strategy meeting in 1997.
Rep. William Jefferson, D-La., indicted on 16 counts involving bribery, money laundering and obstruction of justice.
Former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman, sentenced to seven years in prison and a $230,000 fine for accepting bribes while governor.

CONSERVATIVE/REPUBLICAN
Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham, R-Calif. Pleaded guilty to bribery; sentenced to eight years in prison.
Ohio Gov. Bob Taft. Pleaded no contest to charges of accepting gifts.
Ben Domenich, a conservative blogger and founder of Redstate.com, caught plagiarizing.
Lester Crawford, former FDA commissioner. Pleaded guilty to making false reports for concealing his ownership of stocks in companies his agency was regulating.
Claude Allen, assistant to the president for domestic policy. Pleaded guilty to making multiple fraudulent returns to a Target store.
David Safavian, chief of staff of the General Services Administration. Found guilty of lying and obstructing justice for covering up his relationship with Jack Abramoff.
Rep. Bob Ney, R-Ohio. Pleaded guilty to conspiracy and making false statements in the Jack Abramoff scandal. Sentenced to 30 months in prison and a $6,000 fine.
George Ryan, Republican governor of Illinois, convicted of racketeering, mail fraud, lying to the FBI and more.
Tony Rudy, former chief of staff to Rep. Tom DeLay, R-Texas; admitted soliciting and accepting gifts from lobbyist Jack Abramoff in exchange for influencing legislation.
James Tobin, the RNC's regional director in New England in 2002, and Charles McGee, executive director of the New Hampshire GOP; convicted for orchestrating a phone-jamming campaign to shut down a get-out-the-vote effort by the Democratic challenger to John Sununu.
Jeffrey Ray Nielsen, conservative activist in Orange County and former aide to local Republican Party chairman Scott Baugh, charged with having sex with a 14-year-old boy.
Neil Volz, former chief of staff to Rep. Bob Ney, R-Ohio; pleaded guilty to corruption charges for accepting expensive gifts from Jack Abramoff.
Mark Foley,, R-Fla., resigned amid charges he pursued teenage pages for sex.
Brian Doyle, former deputy press secretary for Homeland Security. Pleaded no contest to using a computer to seduce a child.
Ralph Arza, a GOP state representative in Florida. Resigned after leaving threatening, racist and profanity-laced messages on the voicemail of a fellow Republican, a Hispanic who had filed a complaint against him for using racially disparaging language.
J. Steven Griles, former Deputy Interior Secretary under Gale Norton. Pleaded guilty to lying to Congress about his relationship with lobbyist Jack Abramoff. Sentenced to 10 months in prison and a $30,000 fine.
Mark Zachares, former aide to Rep. Don Young (R-AK). Pleaded guilty to conspiracy as part of the Abramoff scandal.
North Carolina state treasurer Thomas Ravenel, indicted for possessing cocaine with intent to distribute.
David Stockman, former Congressman and Reagan budget director, indicted for conspiracy and securities fraud relating to an auto-parts company.
Mark Deli Siljander, former Congressman, charged with money-laundering, conspiracy and aiding terrorism.

WATCH LIST
Rep Kendrick Meek (D-Fla.), for pursuing federal funding for a shady development project while the developer paid his mom a hefty consulting fee.
Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska), for having his home remodeled by a company embroiled in a bribery scandal.
Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.), for questionable real-estate dealings in partnership with a longtime friend with a checkered past.
Rep. Curt Weldon (R-Pa.), whose daughter's home was raided by the FBI amid an investigation into whether he improperly steered contracts to her consulting firm.

OTHER/LINKS
Armchair Subversive is a list of Republicans convicted of pedophilia.
Political Graveyard has a long list of U.S. politicians who were convicted, expelled or otherwise disgraced, going back to the birth of the republic.

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3 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, your liberal/Democrat list seems rather small in comparison. What about.....

Bill Clinton, president IMPEACHED for lying under oath?

Sen. Hillary Clinton, who as first Lady, hid the Rose Law Form records for 2 years until they "suddenly" appeared from nowhere on the White House hallway table.

Sandy Berger, former Sec of Defense, who was found guilty of stealing Highly Classified documents from the National Archives and destroying them.

To name but a few....
JP5

2/08/2007 9:40 AM  
Blogger Sean Aqui said...

Good point about Berger. Wrote a lot about him, but forgot to add him to the list.

The Clintons? Please. Not only did that long predate this blog, but neither Clinton was ever charged with a crime, much less convicted (if you want to count Clinton's impeachment, then he was acquitted).

You'll note that the Hall of Shame is generally reserved for people either indicted, convicted or otherwise shown to be guilty of things.

2/08/2007 11:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think you should add Senator Jim
Bunning from Baseball HALL OF FAME, to your political HALL OF SHAME, for how he stopped unemployed Democrats, Republicans and Independents workers, from extending unemployment checks.
Sincerely yours. Gerry

3/02/2010 3:25 PM  

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