Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Walking the walk, so far

Okay, so there was the embarassing spectacle of Nancy Pelosi, corruption buster, supporting Jack Murtha for majority leader. Jack Murtha, king of the earmarks, the only unindicted Abscam target, the man who referred to reform proposals as "total crap" -- though he later said the comment was taken out of context, and he noted that he would support the proposals because Pelosi wanted it.

And then there was the prospect of the plum Intelligence chairmanship going to Rep. Alcee Hastings, who before becoming a Congressman was one of only six judges in U.S. history to be impeached and removed from the bench -- on charges of bribery and perjury.

Yes, definitely a few hold-your-breath moments there for the anti-corruption forces.

And yet....

Murtha was overwhelmingly rejected as majority leader, and Pelosi has finally decided that Hastings will not get the post -- not an easy decision, as she risks running afoul of the Black Caucus.

So push comes to shove, the Democrats so far are doing the right thing.

Truth be told, the Hastings chairmanship didn't bother me too much. Not that I approve of corrupt judges, but Hastings was acquitted in his criminal trial (granted, a key witness refused to testify), and by all accounts has kept his nose clean for the entire 14 years he's been in Congress. At some point forgiveness and redemption must be considered.

But by ditching Hastings Pelosi not only deprives critics of an easy target, she demonstrated a willingness to stand up to some powerful interests within her own party. Let's hope she continues to demonstrate such things.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the Capitol, Harry Reid laid out his priorities: ethics and stem cells.
So far, so good. Passing the ethics reforms will be one test. A bigger one is whether they can pass the nine overdue appropriations bills without the larding of pork they currently contain.

We shall be watching.

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2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is my first time at your blog, but I just wanted to leave a comment to say that I think it's really great.

I'll be tuning in daily from now on. :)

11/28/2006 11:29 PM  
Blogger Sean Aqui said...

Thanks for the kind words, and welcome aboard! I look forward to hearing your thoughts.

11/28/2006 11:36 PM  

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