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A new and extensive analysis of campaign donations from all of Jack Abramoff's tribal clients, done by a nonpartisan research firm, shows that a great majority of contributions made by those clients went to Republicans. The analysis undercuts the claim that Abramoff directed sums to Democrats at anywhere near the same rate.

The analysis, which was commissioned by The American Prospect and completed on Jan. 25, was done by Dwight L. Morris and Associates, a for-profit firm specializing in campaign finance that has done research for many media outlets [...]

The analysis shows:

  • in total, the donations of Abramoff's tribal clients to Democrats dropped by nine percent after they hired him, while their donations to Republicans more than doubled, increasing by 135 percent after they signed him up;

  • five out of seven of Abramoff's tribal clients vastly favored Republican candidates over Democratic ones;

  • four of the seven began giving substantially more to Republicans than Democrats after he took them on;

  • Abramoff's clients gave well over twice as much to Republicans than Democrats, while tribes not affiliated with Abramoff gave well over twice as much to Democrats than the GOP -- exactly the reverse pattern.

    "It's very hard to see the donations of Abramoff's clients as a bipartisan greasing of the wheels," Morris, the firm's founder and a former investigations editor at the Los Angeles Times, told The Prospect.

  • It's stuff like this that makes The American Prospect the best left-of-center magazine.

    Update: And it's stuff like this that makes me thank my lucky stars that Media Matters is on the job. Read their comparison of media coverage following the Whitewater and NSA scandals.

    Originally posted to Daily Kos on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 04:55 PM PST.

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    Comment Preferences

    •  This should be sent to (4.00)
      Softballs, Meet the Potatohead, and Yesterday.

      Sometimes you cover your ass with the lame excuses you have, instead of the lame excuses you wish you had. (-3.00, -5.49)

      by litigatormom on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 04:57:40 PM PST

    •  We need to HAMMER this (none)
      This stuff is hard to run from.

      "I went down yesterday to the Piraeus with Glaucon the son of Ariston..." -Socrates

      by polnorth on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 04:58:10 PM PST

      •  Remember what happened to Dan Rather? (none)
        Remember the falsified 60 Minutes episode.

        We need to stick this to Russert and Tweety and all the rest of the inbred capital gang that repeated these GOP lies as fact.  Hang it around their necks like an anchor and kick them overboard.

        This is a clear cut case of GOP lies.

        •  Wrong lesson? Rather ran with a story ... (none)
          ... he was a little too eager to buy, and he didn't do due diligence on supporting artifacts that were brought to his attention.

          You are running with a story you're a little too eager to buy, and you're not doing due diligence on supporting artifacts (like this) that are brought to his attention.

          Look closer.

          None Dare Call It Stupid!

          by RonK Seattle on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 07:15:33 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  do you have proof (none)
            that Abramoff told them to give to the Dem's?

            Maybe the tribes said...

            "Hey jack if you want us to give this much to pukes we have to give some more to Dem such and such or look like crooks."

            Maybe Jack said...

            "Well ok but this much and not a penny more"

            Maybe dean knows this.

            Maybe you guys are so pissed that an "Activist" now runs the DNC instead of a wannabe fascist dlc'r that you'll try anything to discredit him. Even if it means helping the Pukes.

            You have ZERO proof that Jack ordered a SINGLE penny to be donated to a Dem.

          •  ps (none)
            Could you provide a link to the sworn testimony stating money was given "under the direction" of abramoff, and perhaps a clear definition of "under the direction of"
            •  Did whole posts on that. (none)
              And more such testimony willenter public domain as criminal and civil cases and Congressional inquiries proceed.

              If you insist on keeping your eyes glued shut, that's up to you.

              None Dare Call It Stupid!

              by RonK Seattle on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 10:30:31 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

        •  I think you might be fighting an uphill battle (none)
          Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV): "Law-Enforcement Authorities And Others Said The [Abramoff] Investigation's Opening Phase Is Scrutinizing ... Minority Leader Harry Reid, Nevada Democrat ..." (Jerry Seper and Audrey Hudson, "Abramoff-Linked Probe Focuses On 5 Lawmakers," The Washington Times, 1/11/06)

          "[A]bramoff Did Hire As One Of His Lobbyists Edward P. Ayoob, A Veteran Reid Legislative Aide. Manley Acknowledged That Ayoob Helped Raise Campaign Money For His Former Boss. Lawyers Close To The Abramoff Operation Said That Ayoob Held A Fundraising Reception For Reid At Greenberg Traurig's Offices Here." (Jeffrey H. Birnbaum and Derek Willis, "Democrats Also Got Tribal Donations," The Washington Post, 6/3/05)

          "Republicans Weren't The Only Guests In The Skybox: Senator Byron L. Dorgan (D-N.D.), Now The Top Democrat On The Indian Affairs Panel, Held A Fund-Raiser In The Abramoff-Controlled MCI Center Skybox In 2001." (Eamon Javers and Lee Walczak, "'Fear And Loathing' Among The GOP," BusinessWeek Online, 4/25/05)

          Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA): "[T]wice Used Abramoff's Skybox For Fundraisers - Once In 2002 And Again In 2003 - Without Reimbursing. He Also Collected $17,000 From Smith And Other Abramoff-Related Sources In 2003. The Sac & Fox Gave $4,000 More To Harkin In 2004, About Six Months After The Federal Government Allowed The Tribe's Casino To Reopen." (Sharon Theimer, "Lobbyist Helped Sen. Write Tribal Pleas," The Associated Press, 12/3/05)

          These are just a few indications from the Washington Post that Democrats have benefited from Jack Abramoff.  I think the magnitude of GOP participation in this sleeze is partially due to the number of seats the GOP holds in Congress right now ;)

          I suspect the opposite would be true if the Dems were the majority.

          Remember ladies and gentlemen, never let the facts get in the way of your arguement ;)

          by dotnetskills on Sat Jan 28, 2006 at 06:28:20 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Another Form of Corruption (none)
        Another form of corruption is opposing the Alito filibuster in order to pander to wealthy, corporate donors.  Violating one's oath of office to chase after big money campaign contributions is blatant political corruption.  It's important not to lose sight of ALL of the corruption in DC.

        Take Back the Democratic Party http://www.lawlessforcongress.com/

        by fedupnyc on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 08:26:31 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  georgia10 posted on the same study, i believe n/t (none)

      I met Ray McGovern. He's an American hero.

      by missreporter on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 04:58:27 PM PST

    •  The Fourth Estate is Dead (none)
      as this proves....if you missed the eulogy, click here.  

      Don't bother sending flowers as it would be a waste of money.

      I need some wine.

    •  HEY! (none)
      Use the search!  georgia10 already frontpaged this!

      </runs-screaming-from-site-owner>

      Now let's see if this gets any legs.

      "There's no question that the minute I got elected, the storm clouds on the horizon were getting nearly directly overhead." - GWB, 5/11/01

      by Stymnus on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 04:58:31 PM PST

    •  Tim for Russert's pink slip. (none)
    •  Talking Heads (none)
      Facts are simple and facts are straight
      Facts are lazy and facts are late
      Facts all come with points of view
      Facts don't do what I want them to
      Facts just twist the truth around
      Facts are living turned inside out
      Facts are getting the best of them
      Facts are nothing on the face of things
      Facts don't stain the furniture
      Facts go out and slam the door
      Facts are written all over your face
      Facts continue to change their shape

      "I was Rambo in the disco. I was shootin' to the beat. When they burned me in effigy. My vacation was complete." Neil Young. Mideast Vacation.

      by Mike S on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 05:07:19 PM PST

    •  I'll be glad when everyone Abramhoff (none)
      bought off has been identified by him and charged with their crimes. Then we can finish cleaning up this trail of Republican media lies and the lying liars who told them.

      -6.88/-5.64 * You know what's happening. Fight it.

      by John West on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 05:08:12 PM PST

    •  Eat your shit (none)
      you fucking liars!
    •  Memo to Ronk, CC: DHinMI (none)
      NOW can you get off your high horses?
    •  Kos (none)
      You need to  glance at the front page, homeboy. G10's got this up right below.

      You didn't do it.

      by Earl on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 05:11:32 PM PST

    •  Hmm.. does Lying Timmy and Matt and Katie know? (none)
      Time to voice mail and email flood NBC, MSNBC, Tim Russert, Matt whatever, and Katie whomever with these facts. They want to shove lies down our throats, we'll shove the truth right back at the lying bastards!!!  I WANT MY COUNTRY BACK!@!!
      •  Just sent my email to these folks (none)
        Demanding apologies in prime time and letting them know I'll be complaining to the FCC, FEC< and any other party who I can bitch at about the lies being purported to American citizens by NBC News and their affiliates.

        Steve Capus, Pres. NBC News
        212-664-3228
        steve.capus@nbc.com

        Rick Kaplan, Pres. MSNBC
        Tel. 201-583-5050
        Fax 201-583-5179
        rick.kaplan@msnbc.com

        Bill Wolff, VP Program.
        201-583-5008
        bill.wolff@msnbc.com

        Jeremy Gaines, VP Comm.
        Tel. 201-583-5000
        Fax 201-583-5977
        jeremy.gaines@msnbc.com

        David McCormick, Ombudsman
        david.mccormick@nbc.com

        •  Oh yeah... (none)
          This is kinda like Mad Cow disease. You don't know which Republicans are infected already and which are not in the herd ... so you have to kill and burn them all, so-to-speak. Let this be the first election where we start clearing out these MAD ELEPHANTS>  :)
      •  I emailed the (none)
        American Prospect study to the Today Show.  I also sent two emails, castigating them for a lack of journalistic integrity and suggesting that perhaps they were all on the White House payroll.  

        Just because you're self-righteous doesn't mean you're not a hypocrite.

        by AMcG826 on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 07:12:16 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  There is nothing scandalous (none)
      about legal campaign contributions.  It is the illegal ones that are scandalous.

      The tribes that existed before Abramoff and have given legal contributions before Abramoff were bi-partisan givers.  Many of the tribes that hired Abramoff did give to both parties.  But I haven't seen anyone question the legality or propriety of those contributions.  Hiring Abramoff may have been a bad choice, but it doesn't make everything the tribes do afterwards illegal.

      The allegedly illegal contibutions were to Republicans alone, therefore there is no way the media can call the scandal bi-partisan.  The Republicans own it lock, stock and barrel.

      The end is near for those who wait.

      by tc59 on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 05:12:49 PM PST

    •  It's all legal donations to Republicans (none)
      and Democrats until proven or shown otherwise, so I'm rather sick at this point of the harping on it by the corporate media and others in the first place.
      •  Viktor (none)
        What???  If you mean that these are allegations rather than convictions, what about the guilty plea?  If you are talking about client-funded donations, it was either legal or illegal when they did it, we may not be able to prove its illegalit, but its character was established at the time of the act.

        I've probably misunderstood what you are saying.

        "I felt as if I alone of all my townsmen had paid my tax." Thoreau

        by NearlyNormal on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 05:22:02 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  I am again going to (none)
      promote my diary of this evening on the subject, which has a nice chart to clarify things for Tim, Katie, and Matt.

      Sixteen scandals in my heart will glow: click "A is for Abramoff"

      by Major Danby on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 05:16:18 PM PST

    •  John Harwood is another hack shill (none)
      What is it with these Newsweek/MSNBC people? He's on Olbermann right now and just supported all of the Rove talking points by saying that in trying to filibuster Alito the Democrats show that they're in "disarray", that they're trying to block a nominee who has the support of a majority of senators and are thus obstructionists who are denying him an up or down vote, and that they're only going to hurt the reelection chances of red state Dem senators in November. All delivered with the straight face and mock conviction of a true hack shill.

      And now they're doing a kiss-up to Fred Barnes and his new book on why Shrub is still a maverick political outsider rebelling against inside-the-beltway Washington insiders.

      It's not Olbermann. They're making him have these people on and cover this crap. How much longer before he quits and/or is forced off?

      But clearly, the Rove spin machine is now in overdrive, which shows that they're starting to get desperate. Bring it on. We'll show them who cleans whose clock.

      "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." Margaret Mead

      by kovie on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 05:16:51 PM PST

    •  Great job by Prospect, but.... (none)
      ...next time, how about bloggers and their readers get together and hire an independent research firm to produce an unassilable document such as this...That would be a powerful statement by the netroots...

      I did not receive $ from Ketchum, U.S. Department of Ed or HHS to write this---though I wish I had.

      by Volvo Liberal on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 05:17:03 PM PST

    •  A missed point if it is a point... (none)
      Isn't timeliness an issue? Tribes that gave money to candidates before Abramoff should be disassociated from the scandal. Reid, for example, stated that he was supported by 22 Indian tribes in his state of Nevada for his work for them, and was never associated with Abramoff, contrary to initial reports.

      Otherwise, it would seem that technically, aside of the differential, some Democrats did receive Abramoff money.

      •  But Reid, for example, received $21.5K ... (none)
        ... in campaign contributions from the Agua Caliente under Abramoff's influence, though he had never received anything from this tribe before.

        Similar for another 3 tribes and approx $23K in contributions.

        None of this makes Harry guilty, none of it makes the tribes guilty, and none of it makes any Republicans innocent.

        And there is no reason for any Dem to be defensive (or deceptive, or self-deceptive) about anything that doesn't add up to trouble for us even if it IS true.

        None Dare Call It Stupid!

        by RonK Seattle on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 07:45:20 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  No competition (none)
      It's stuff like this that makes The American Prospect the best left-of-center magazine.
      It's the lack of competition that makes them the best left-of-center magazine.

      Grok Your World
      grok: to understand something in a deep and empathic way

      by John Driscoll on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 05:18:03 PM PST

    •  New Frame (none)
      "Abramoff didn't give money to Democrats he actually TOOK MONEY AWAY FROM THEM to give to REPBULICANS"   
      •  Before Abramoff, tribes in this study gave ... (none)
        ... an average of $1,046/month to Dem's.

        Tribes under Abramoff's influence gave an average of $2,768 to Dem's.

        GOP before/after's are $947 and $6,432 respectively.

        That's if the Morris numbers are right. (The ones in the 2005-12-21 Bloomberg article assuredly weren't, and I note a correction of ~$100K in one of the items in this version.)

        None Dare Call It Stupid!

        by RonK Seattle on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 07:09:20 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  so (none)
          Before jack came to town the tribes gave 52.4% to Dem's and 47.6% to Pukes.

          After he gave 29.9% to Dems and 70.1% to Pukes.

          So RonK (DH) Jack the hack took 22.5% of their political contribution money normal earmarked for Dem's and gave it to Pukes.

          I know it hurts you guys to have the Corporatists swinging in the wing but da facts are da facts.

          We can play word games all night.

          In fact we should be.

          •  Well, no (none)
            And insufferable word games only serve to wear out our welcome with journalists and with audiences of uncommitted/persuadable voters.

            And there's no need to win this point (as if we could). It does not serve our interests in the least.

            None Dare Call It Stupid!

            by RonK Seattle on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 07:54:22 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  uncommited (none)
              Uncommitted voters at this stage are absolute morons so we needn't worry about them parsing words.

              You didn't refute my point you just got hung up on my word game remark which in fact was directed at your attempt to use unverified numbers to diminish Dean's position. (damn activist)

              Is the following factually correct given your numbers?

              "Since Jack Abramoff started directing Tribe money the percentage donated to Dem's dropped 22.5% while the republican increased to 70.1%"

              •  That's a lousy attitude toward voters (none)
                But tribe for tribe, the average reduction in percentage share to D's was 11.4%.

                The average increase in annual contribution to D's was 2,543%. (For R's, it was 10,919%.)

                That's not counting the Tigau tribe -- central to the scandals -- whcih the study threw out on thin pretext.

                That's assuming Abramoff only influenced the tribes while formally registered as their agent (which he didn't always do).

                And that's ignoring the tribes' contribution patterns after they dumped Abramoff (where the larger numbers would dominate the sparse giving in the pre-Abramoff period).

                None Dare Call It Stupid!

                by RonK Seattle on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 08:47:32 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  you know what. (none)
                  You are full of it.

                  I've asked point blank if my statement was factually correct and you bob and weave to pimp your dem's got more money meme.

                  As for my voter attitude I'm so sick and tired of you dlc types that think we should dress up like pukes to convince morons that they shouldn't vote for the real fascists and instead should vote for wannabe fascists.

                  When 40% of the eligible voters choose not to vote because they feel they aren't being represented, are cynical, apathetic, or afraid they don't know enough to vote I think your strategy is lazy, immoral, and suspicious.

                  So answer my question. Was my statement factually correct?

                  •  You'd have to rewrite it, add a lot of qualifiers (none)
                    ... such as assuming the Morris data is sound, but basically true.

                    What good does it do you? How often is it going to fool anybody, and how often is it just going to raise suspicion?

                    And what kind of blowback are you going to get when some righty samrtass comes on the radio and tells people who bought your line that (for instance) last year's Dem average for ALL tribes, with Abramoff kicked to the curb, was a measly 30.3%?

                    None Dare Call It Stupid!

                    by RonK Seattle on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 10:25:21 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  ok (none)
                      Sorry to sound off on you alone.

                      But, this is what we are dealing with....


                      "You can call Senator Feinstein many things, but before today, partisan puppet wasn't one of them. By today supporting a filibuster on Judge Alito, she has caved to the far left fringe, much to the delight of John Kerry, Ted Kennedy and the Davos Democrats." -Tracey Schmitt, RNC Press Secretary

                      Do you think Governor Dean is stupid enough to "put his neck out" knowing he has enemies in both parties just waiting for him to slip up?

                      He is doing his best to keep the momentum on our side while people are paying attention. That's why the PUKES are desperate to make this a bi-partisan scandal.

                      Dean chooses his words carefully and as the story develops he will undoubtedly be right out front combating bullshit spewed by the Pukes and swallowed whole by the presstitutes.

                      Your efforts to "protect" Dem's from overstating might be noble but a complete waste of time considering what leads is whatever the rnc thinks sounds good or focus groups well regardless of where the facts lay.

                      I was careful not to twist or manipulate the stats you gave me, rather I was building a sound bite based on them that might actually penetrate the bombarded skulls of media consumers.

                      •  oy (none)
                        We are "combatting" the RNC by alienating the press and the public, getting shot down in fact-for-fact showdowns, depleting our credibility and the audience's patience, letting Ken Mehlman look like the grown-up, and this leads to victory ... how?

                        I'm still not getting it.

                        None Dare Call It Stupid!

                        by RonK Seattle on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 11:36:57 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  well (none)
                          Maybe in the rarefied world of the elite blogishphere your point, counterpoint, strategy might provide participants with a justification for the superior attitude needed to gaze down on the common folk, however while you do that the pukes are creating the reality the rest of us have to wade through.

                          The truly amazing thing you guys don't understand is that the in the two weeks you've taken trying to  discredit Dean's position the Pukes have created ten different memes they have spoon feed the media to undermine this perfect position of yours.

                          The straw man you created in your last answer is hollow. Neither Dean nor I have peddled arguments with factual inaccuracies that have been shot down by you or the mehlman press, yet they still fill the airwaves with shit like I posted above.

                          You have the nerve to say that fighting back with our own quick yet factually created sound bites depletes our credibility, and patience with voters without providing a single example of when that has happened.

                          Last time I checked the gop wasn't winning because they spent time ensuring the minutia of their talking points was perfectly accurate and beyond reproach afraid they would try the audiences patience.

                          Do you remember the Osama tape sounding like "democrat" talking points? Either do I.

        •  Questions (none)
          1. Are there any public documents that include Abramoff's directing tribes to give money to Dems?
          2. If so, what was his motivation in directing some tribal money to Dems?
          3. Where was that big influx of tribe money coming from? Did they see some yy change in income for some reason?
          4. Why did some tribes stop donating altogether?
          •  Answers (none)
            1. Yes. There is public comment, doucmentation, and reliable proffers of additional documentation not yet disclosed (some of which has found its way into the hands of journalists, attorneys and others with interest in teh case). There are also a few denials -- some apparently self-serving (but futile), and some plausibly true (depending on the tribe, the affiant and the occasion).

            2. Motivations are manifold and compelling, for
            2.a. Abramoff to direct contributions to Dem's,
            2.b. Tribal leaders to allow this direction, and
            2.c. Tribal insiders to testify honestly when they say ABramoff directed them.

            I'll deal with these and other reality checks in a future post at TNH.

            None Dare Call It Stupid!

            by RonK Seattle on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 08:02:00 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Your other 2, and 3 (none)
            2. Casinos are license to print money, UNLESS nearby gambling options are liberalized. Casino tribes are money geysers IF they can keep their operations open and their neighbors' operations (tribal or otherwise) restricted or closed.

            There's plenty of money, but little reason to spend it on politics unless you think there's anew opportunity or a new threat. Abramoff and his gang were skilled at creating the perception of competitive threats (and sometimes creating and executing real threats against their own clients) to get them to spend.

            Casino tribes spend most of their political budgets in state government arenas -- lobbying on tribal compacts and regulation of competitive gaming establishments.

            Abramoff typically convinced his tribes that a dire threat existed, that they didn't know what to do about it on the federal level, and that he did.

            In the Coushatta case, he extracted $32,000,000 in contract consulting fees and "expenses", while overseeing tribal contributions of $209,250 (per the study ... I have some doubts, but it's in the right ballpark).

            3. Some wised up, some changed leadership, some encountered changes in motivation (threat reduction or business failure).

            None Dare Call It Stupid!

            by RonK Seattle on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 09:02:17 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Thanks (none)
              All pretty fascinating, but all sort of beside the point, no? I mean when it comes down to it, we're squabbling over what are probably legal contributions.

              Which leads me to add that I think that people are getting annoyed with you because while the oppostition (the media and Republicans) is lobbing missiles at us, thereby creating a frame that leads to Americans viewing this as a bipartisan scandal, you are lobbing spitballs at your allies by advocating for the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

              Not that there's anything wrong with that, Ron. It's admirable on some level, but the battle Dems are fighting is for the narrative. So I wonder, do you think there is some advantage for us to look at this whole mess in a more objective manner?

              •  Yes, Dem's are currently fighting to occupy ... (none)
                ... a losing position. We get no advantage from it, we can't defend it, and we abandoned winning positions to seize this poisoned pawn.

                And it would all be beside the point, except we've taken up insisting that the world adopt our (erroneous) perspective.

                It's an error we make over and over, and the costs are mounting up.

                None Dare Call It Stupid!

                by RonK Seattle on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 10:41:56 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

          •  replies (none)
            1) Are there any public documents that include Abramoff's directing tribes to give money to Dems?

            No, unless you mean by "directing" giving the tribes "wish lists" that include the names of democrats.

            This stands in stark contrast to documentation (not just showing up on a list, but emails and testimony) regarding Abramoff actually "directing" contribution to Gail Norton's Astroturf Group named CREA (as in telling the tribes to give CREA very large sums of money --- $50K-$100K at at pop --- at when it concerns at least one tribe, the tribe would have had to transfer funds into the account that the CREA check was drawn from in order for it to be cashed.  THAT is "directing" contributions).

            There is also some ambiguous testimony that says that Abramoff told tribes to give to both Democratic and Republican Party committees.  

            What does not exist, at this point, is any evidence of Abramoff having an actual relationship with any Democratic officials, and those democratic officials accepting favors from Abramoff, or checks handed to them by Abramoff.

            2) If so, what was his motivation in directing some tribal money to Dems?

            This is speculative, but.....Abramoff worked for lobbying firms, and those firms would not have wanted to associate themselves exclusively with giving to one party.   This is especially true when one remembers that the Democrats controlled the Senate during the period when Abramoff's clients were giving the most money away to political candidates.  

            Certainly, there is nothing that suggests that Abramoff was trying to establish personal relationships with Democrats in the way he did with GOP officials.

            Where was that big influx of tribe money coming from? Did they see some yy change in income for some reason?

            In 2001, the GOP took over the executive branch -- that meant that every regulation affecting Native Americans had to go through a gauntlet of GOP political hacks.   Most of these GOP hacks were concentrated in Gail Norton's Interior Department, in the Bureau of Indian Affairs --- Abramoff convinced the tribes that the only way that their interests would be served would be massive contributions to Norton's favorite "charity", and equally large contributions to GOP officeholders who were well connected to the Interior Department bureaucracy.

            And Abramoff could produce these GOP officeholders and bureaucrats -- He could have a placque with his name on it put on a skybox, and invite his "friends" over to watch a game -- and of course these "friends" included GOP politicians and bureaucrats that the tribes wanted favors from.  (and because a skybox seat has a "nominal" value of $49, the "gift" didn't have to be reported.)

            Abramoff could "host" dinners and meetings at his restaurant for his clients and GOP pols... (of course, these costs were being passed off to the tribes in various fees, and very often the tribes being charged were getting no benefit from what they were paying for.)

            ,,,,and the thing is, all this activity that involved Abramoff personally had to do only with GOP officials and bureaucrats.

            ******

            this is not to say that there weren't "links" to Democrats.... but the question is how many degrees of separation constitutes a significant "link".   With the Gooper, there was NO degree of separation....

    •  Doesn't take a genius to figure out (none)
      If you're going to bribe some members of Congress, bribe those in the majority. You get more done that way.

      Congressional scandals are always about the majority.

    •  I can hear my wingnut brother now (none)
      They'll say that the American Prospect is a liberal magazine, therefore this study can be ignored.
    •  Reduced Time (none)
      Won't Abramhoff give it up on all these jerkoffs for a reduced sentence. Then the perjury trials can start-hope someones getting this all down-what these assholes are saying

      "I'll Bet A Buck" One Flew Over The Cuckoos Nest

      by Horsehead on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 05:23:16 PM PST

    •  Personal Note: (none)
      Tim, lay off the Democrats. In implying that they're dirty, you also implied that the Indian Nations who made their own donations are dirty too.
      Really Tim, do you want that kind of 'fan' base and emails to your show?

      Freedom is the center of this country. All else must serve it and defend lest all rights fall to fear.

      by RElland on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 05:25:36 PM PST

    •  I figured it out (none)
      The media is lying about this deliberately, and I've figured out why.

      It's because in order to clarify that this is only a Republican scandal, they would have to let Americans know what the difference is between the legal and illegal contributions.

      It's not that the story is too complicated for Americans to learn. Oh no - we can learn inside of a week how the campaign finance system works, and what the difference is between the ILLEGAL contributions that Republicans took and the LEGAL contributions that Democrats took.

      The problem is that THE CORPORATE MEDIA MASTERS DON'T WANT AMERICANS TO LEARN THE DIFFERENCE!!!

      If Americans learn the difference, they'll be outraged and demand that the whole system get overhauled. So the corporate media's gameplan is to muddy the waters as much as possible and hope that the whole thing blows over in a few months.

      They're hoping we throw up our hands in frustration and become disinterested before this scandal gains enough momentum to require substantive action.

      THAT is why they're working so hard to parrot the GOP line.

    •  ehm.. (none)
      A new and extensive analysis of campaign donations from all of Jack Abramoff's tribal clients, done by a nonpartisan research firm, shows that [b]a great majority of contributions made by those clients went to Republicans.[/b] The analysis undercuts the claim that Abramoff directed sums to Democrats at [b]anywhere near the same rate.[/b]

      That sounds like mud to me.

      As if to say that they both broke the law, but at slightly different levels.

      Is that your assertion?

      •  No (none)
        There are two pots of money involved; money which Abramoff gave directly to politicians, and money which Abramoff's clients gave to politicians.

        The first pot of money is dirty. Extortion, bribery, etc., etc.
        The second pot of money is clean. Legitimate political donations.

        All of the money in the first pot went to Republicans.
        Some of the money in the second pot went to Republicans, some to Democrats. The study showed that the fraction that went to Republicans increased after Abramoff showed up.

        So: Republicans: All the dirty money + some of the clean money
        Democrats: Some of the clean money.

        -dms

        •  I get what you're saying (4.00)
          And what Kos was saying.

          However... It's a poorly worded argument.

          "... shows that a great majority of contributions made by those clients went to Republicans"

          And again, it sounds like mud to me.

          "A great majority".

          No... Instead say: "Illegal contributions involve Rebublicans, and no Democrats."

          No majority, no minority, no nada.

          None whatsoever.

          This "majority" thing takes into account things Democrats aren't guilty of.

          Too bad - but exact wording matters.

          •  Where do they report their illegal contributions? (none)
            Hint: They don't.

            Most of Abramoff's direct contributions are going to turn out to be legal too.

            It's the quid pro quo, the fake charities hiring staffers' wives, etc. that will sink the Republicans.

            Democrats got some straight-up contributions from the tribes, but they didn't get bennies in return for favors.

            Good government is a self-fulfilling prophesy. (-4.88, -5.74)

            by sagra on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 07:40:17 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Exactly right, NashTad (none)
            And whether or not it's a poorly worded argument, it's the WRONG argument. And it's exactly the discussion the Republican puppet masters want everyone to be having and so far they've succeeded spectacularly. So successful have they been that even we liberals are falling right into the trap. They love it when the debate turns to the finer points of how much the Indian tribes gave to each party because it completely obscures the real issue - which is that all of the ILLEGAL activity was done by Republicans for Republicans. That's the point that we need to stay on. When you write emails and letters correcting the media talking heads on what percentage of LEGAL donations went to Democrats and what percentage went to Republicans, who gave what to who before and after Abramoff, you're playing right into right wing hands. IT DOESN'T MATTER! That has nothing to do with what Abramoff and the Republicans are in hot water for. Don't get swept into that phony debate, no matter how infuriating it is to see the idiots on TV get it wrong. What they really need pointed out to them is that legal contributions shouldn't even be part of the discussion of the Abramoff scandal!
      •  The thing to realize... (none)
        The money donated by the tribes is not necessarily dirty at all.

        Technically, the law has been broken with money that came from Abramoff and his family, which money went EXCLUSIVELY to Republicans.  Not millions of dollars, no, but he has pled guilty to it.

        The only way that the Republicans can get out of it is to deny the implications, but they will have their own indictments and, one would hope, trials.

        Some of the money from the tribes can be strongly suggested to have come as quid pro quo for things like meetings with the President or other Administration figures, favorable legislation and the like.  It is yet to be proven whose money and how much this represents, or who the money went to.

        But it can't be denied that after Abramoff took the tribes as clients, they gave LESS to Democrats and MUCH MORE to Republicans than they were already doing.

        This implicating the Democrats by default is as crazy as the assertion (made in certain Presidential debates!) that Democrats not voting for as big of a tax cut as Republicans wanted is exactly the same as voting for a tax increase....

        "There's no question that the minute I got elected, the storm clouds on the horizon were getting nearly directly overhead." - GWB, 5/11/01

        by Stymnus on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 05:49:20 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  yes, but lets not allow our message (none)
          . . . to be distracted by too many details and nuances.  

          we need to keep it simple.  Republicans broke the law, democrats did not.  
          A top republican money man pleaded guilty to bribing republican congressmen and all will likely spend time in federal prison.  

          Democrats obeyed the letter and spirit of the law.  It is legal to accept campaign donations if federal regulations are followed.  Millions of Americans engage give these donations, and it is their constitutional right.  

          "Republicans broke the law, democrats did not."  That is the first and last thing we need to always say on this, and always bring the debated back to that very focused point.  

          We need to avoided having our message distracted by details and nuances that average voters could care less about, such as we did over type fonts on the issue of the Dan Rather CBS documents.  Although our message has not yet gotten that far off track, I am worried we are sliding in that direction.  

    •  Wait a Minute.... (none)
      The analysis undercuts the claim that Abramoff directed sums to Democrats at anywhere near the same rate.

      At anywhere near the same rate? I thought the Democratic rate was... zero? Howard Dean is fighting pretty passionately that Ambramoff didn't give a dime, nor direct a dime, to Democrats.

      The Washington Post takes the gold for most dishonorable partisan hack as an ombusperson

      by LeftHandedMan on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 05:52:02 PM PST

      •  I'm been fighting pretty hard (none)
        the idea that Ambramoff 'directed' the Indian tribes to do anything... that the tribes donated on their own... and Ambramoff had jackshit to do with a former client of his making donations on their own... this piece, as written, seems to undercut that so I would appreciate a clarification.

        Did the writer just turn a bad phrase, or are people now accepting the idea that the tribes who donated were -in any way- influenced by Ambramoff to do so?

        The Washington Post takes the gold for most dishonorable partisan hack as an ombusperson

        by LeftHandedMan on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 05:57:14 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Tribes donated a lot more to Dem's ... (none)
          ... while under Abramoff's influence. There is sworn and unsworn testimony and documentation to the effect that they did so at Abramoff's direction.

          This is not a problem for us, UNLESS we force a shootout with our critics on this indefensible point.

          None Dare Call It Stupid!

          by RonK Seattle on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 08:17:43 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  Senator Dog fucker (none)
      Here's Ricky next yr. "I never had sex with that poodle!"

      "It's better to die on your feet then live on your knees"

      by Blutodog on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 06:04:39 PM PST

    •  They ain't lyin' (none)
      This IS in another front-page thread, I had a comment there about why I think the whole media coverage of this, AND the left's reaction, has got the point wrong.

      The point is, the system is failing.  Our democracy, that is, our Republic.

      Money talks.  It's pay-to-play.

      Some of the contributions probably represent shady quid-pro-quo deals.

      Whoever is on the other end of those as an Elected Official must be prosecuted.

      So why isn't the press heeding the call for a Special Prosecutor?  What does it matter if he "directed" contribs to both parties?  It doesn't.

    •  I got handed my papers today, (none)
      All because I was successful in getting this printed in the AR Dem-Gazette, and I work for a small city.

      Now is time of decision
      Now is the time to determine the future of this nation. Are we to abandon the Constitution and allow the executive branch effective power that essentially trumps the Congress, or are we to find through real investigation whether this pitiful excuse for an administration has broken numerous laws and should be impeached ?

      I want the latter and demand action from my elected officials.

      To oppose the Constitution of the United States for reasons cited by these goons is simply too much. This excuse for an administration has crossed the line and needs to be held in check. Impeachment is the best start, and then to achieve closure, the entire group should be held over to the international court for war crimes. What we are seeing is the dissolution of the U. S. A. 's constitutional form of government, and the public seems deaf. I for one will not stand still for it. As an American, I expect much better even from the elected officials whom I do not agree with. I expect them to obey the law.
      BRAD TURNER / Carlisle

      I thought it was well written, and I fucking was fired for it. Actually, to avoid prosecution, my less than liberal employer eliminated my position, so that I have the option to get unemployment. I am so grateful.  Where are my 1st Bill of Rights? Any help out there?

    •  Why not ask the tribes why they gave the money? (none)
      Is anyone aware of any reporters who have gone to the tribes to ask if Abramoff directed them to give any of the contributions to Democrats?

      Or is this basic piece of legwork simply beyond the skill of our national stenography pool?  So much easier to read verbatim whatever Mehlman or McClellan hand out every day.

      If anyone has any links, please post them.

      Dave in DC

      Tags Abramoff, Indian Tribes, Contributions

    •  this is a repug scandal (none)
      say it eleventy billion times just like the pugs repeat everything they say.

      That jack was actually the TOOL of the pug party in which he was put there BY them in order to provide a constant flow of money into their access machine is being lost on the entire 'liberal media'

      No, it's a bi-partisan scandal.

      I fucking hate these criminals.

    •  I predict Tweety will make a sharp left turn soon (none)
      It's been his pattern over the years. Play one side off against the other. It's all just a big game to him, so don't be surprised if he picks up on some issue to hammer the right wing with.

      He is without principle, so don't be surprised when he knifes his new republican friends in the back and pretends to be a progressive again.

      •  It's called "ADD" (none)
        or "attention defecit disorder" combined with a propensity to spit when he talks. He's a disgusting piece of crap, that guy.

        "There is more stupidity around than hydrogen and it has a longer shelf life." Frank Zappa.

        by Nordic on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 06:33:57 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  U! S! A! Where Factuality Is Leftist n/t (none)

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy....--ML King, "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 06:35:42 PM PST

    •  Sadly the damage is already done (none)
      Just like the Swiftboat smear, here we are weeks after this story broke and just now fleshing out the facts.

      The Abramoff story was developing for the LAST YEAR! Why didn't the Democratic party do this research and have these facts available to shout on every infotainment talking bublle head show from day one, when the indictments were issued?

      Instead, we let them spin the "bipartisan scandal" meme and even put Newt Gingrich up as a reformer!

      When will we ever learn. Timing in news cycles are EVERYTHING!

      •  I agree/disagree (none)
        Yes, the Dems should have been ready, but I have to tell you: I don't know how anyone could have prepared for the false media frame that was created once Abraomoff was indicted. I mean, the coverage is simply stunning, beyong anything we have ever seen before...Yes, we could have done more, but it was hard to predict such mendacity, even from the corporate whore media we know and love...

        By the way, where is Horse when we need him?

        I did not receive $ from Ketchum, U.S. Department of Ed or HHS to write this---though I wish I had.

        by Volvo Liberal on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 07:47:36 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Is there a single memo or email? (none)
      Is there a single memo or email from Abramoff to any of these clients that tells them to donate to a Democrat?    Without that sort of evidence any claim that the tribes were being directed by Abramoff to donate to Democrats and Republicans is just a bunch of GOP spin.
      •  That's the key (none)
        Why would Jack direct any additional money to Democrats? He had no pull with them.

        He said one of the tribes was "stupid" in their contributions and would deserve to get "wiped out."

        The year before he got to them, they gave $5000 to deams, and under $1000 to Reps.

        The year he got to them, they gace $12000 to Dems and $158,000 to Reps.

        Tell me- did Jack direct that extra $7000 to Dems? And if he did why?

        And does size matter? We're talking $157,00 versus $7000.

    •  Bastards (none)
      one and all.  Blast their eyes.

      When we stand down, Iraqis will stand up -7.50, -6.15

      by bloomer 101 on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 07:58:01 PM PST

    •  Lessons learned from Big Russ: (none)
      **Lying

      **Pandering

      **Payola

      **Bullshit

      **Ass Kissing

      **Taking the $ No Matter What

    •  Technically speaking... (none)
      the new study may be accurate and all, but today's reporters undoubtedly have documentary evidence which they won't disclose which mandates that the exclusively-Republican bribery scandal be described as bi-partisan.  And even if the facts dispute them, it won't change their minds, methods, opinions or approaches.

      Let justice reign though the heavens tremble

      by Viceroy on Fri Jan 27, 2006 at 10:45:50 PM PST

    •  kos, that was a greattttttttttttttt diary. thanks (none)
    •  catch 22 (none)
         Ah, that bloated character , Russert!  The nuttery rhetoric has escalated to such a degree that even Ann Koulter's rat poison suggestion almost sounds normal.  Tim Russert desperately tries to appear normal but his credibility has long been destroyed once Libby made that phone call(s) to him in the cia gate crime. That is exactly what the Republican propaganda machine wants everyone to believe. These very smart Republicans have learned from Karl Rove very well, destroy the truth, just launch the torpedos, and hope it hits a nerve in the American psyche. The trouble with this form of insanity of pathological lying and attempted brain washing , is that the distributors of it begin to believe their own bullshit. They are insulated in elite cubicles, and reality becomes collateral damage.  The machine begins to feed on itself, demanding more and more insanity to feed its insatiable hunger for the status quo to be conservatively and obsessively protected.  
           Getting back to that catch 22 idea, I keep rememebering that movie , where everything was trapped by the deals that had to be made to keep the world of schemes from collapsing in on themselves. It is almost like quicksand, in that the harder you struggle the more you sink into oblivion.  The republicans and their pet cronies , the media, have trapped themselves into protecting each other, because the true monstrosity of the corruption is like a tsunami that runs from congress and the white house back to the media and back again ad infinitum.  How can the journalist really cover this scandal when they are in it up to their arm pits. The media has colluded by default with the criminal mentality pervading the G O P's political behavior by failing to do follow their civic minded conscience.  But they are in for a rude awakening because I truly believe there are real heroes going after these bastards. There is a glimmer of hope that the American public is beginning to smell the real stench of decay and putrification from the true tragic nature of this corruption.
    •  It's just old news when republicans break the law (none)
      but a democrat breaking the law... that you don't see too much!

      I tell you truly, whatever you did for the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me. -- Matthew 25:40

      by mSnook on Sat Jan 28, 2006 at 04:13:07 AM PST

    •  Democrats too - for decades! (none)
      Hi KOS,

      You wrote:

      "It's stuff like this that makes The American Prospect the best left-of-center magazine."

      To which - this is your best?

      For example, TAP had this:

      "shows that a great majority of contributions made by those clients went to Republicans. The analysis undercuts the claim that Abramoff directed sums to Democrats at anywhere near the same rate."

      But how about the actual claim being made by Republicans, the press and lots of sentient folks, simply that Abramoff clients gave large sums of money to both parties, even if not equally? I have not seen a single source, plitical or news, claiming the money went equally, and so the strawman argument against what is not claimed falls.

      The biggest reason for hope for the Democrats that this `climate of corruption' strategy will work is counting on the traditional American short attention span and general cluelessness among many folks, especially in the media, regarding history.

      For example, note at the link you gave TAP using as a heading such as `pre-Abramoff' and `post-Abramoff'. Neat! Focuses the attention on the only real critical event!

      Of course, it could have said pre- or post- Republican takeover of Congress for the first time in over four decades, you know, 1995.

      I got involved in politics in the early sixties. At that time and through the seventies, Democratic Party control of the Congress seemed to everyone to be something like the Divine Order of things! The Democrats not only had decades of majorities, they were substantial and even massive majorities. For example, in the 1965-1966 Congress, the Democrats had 68 of the 100 Senate seats and 295 of the 435 Congressional seats, leaving 32 Republican Senators and 140 Republican Congressmen.

      So, KOS, if someone did a study on where influence money went, in what proportions of Democrat and Republican, for those four decades and more, who was getting the gravy? The simple fact is that the party who controls the chamber, Senate or House, is going to get substantially more than the minority, period! That's because they have the Committee chairmanships and majorities, can control what legislation gets out of committee and on the floor, what makes it or doesn't intl that legislation, and so on. You know that, KOS, as do the Democrats. For all those decades that the Democrats were in control, they were getting the big lobbying money. That changed with the 1994 election. Hence, 1995 becomes post-Abramoff, and not, post party control change, for convenience

      Take the K Street Project, strong arming of lobbyists to hire Republicans and such. If you don't remember the stories in the press from early 1995, I certainly do! When the nation gave into what Peter Jennings called a `tantrum' in that 1994 election, and gave the Republicans control of the Congress for the first time in 42 years ( and for only the second two year period in seventy years!), the then K street lobbying firms were shaken. The media were full of stories in early 1995, when the Committee assigments and proprtions were set, that the Washington lobbying firms had for so long hired and talked to overwhelmingly Democrats, that when one of them would hear the name of a new Committee chairman important to them, they'd reply `Who?'? They didn't even know these Repunblicans! Decades had been spent cozying up to Democrats, including very much hiring people who had contacts and influence with and were Democrats, to the near total exclusion of Republicans! So of course when Republicans start pressuring those same K Street firms to hire more Republicans after 1994's election, this is some kind of attack on Divine Order!

      I don't like it either, but for the Democrats to play simon pure on this is a joke, a bad one, that counts on abject cluelessness. The Republicans have controlled the House for 12 years. Really, look at almost 74 years of Democratic control (except for one two year period), and see what you find.

      Abramoff is a slimeball, and I truly hope every Republican (and Democrat) that sold out for money at best loses his/her seat, and even does the perp walk. But am I to think that if the Democrats were in control, there would be anything like purity? Chuck Schumer is all about privacy rights and lectures the public about it constantly, but members of his staff fraudulently obtain the `private' credit report of an African American Republican candidate for the Senate, by using forged signatures! Hillary has just been made to pay over $30K in fines for that little bookkeeping error that allowed her campaign to spent, fraudulently, nearly three quarters of a million on her Senate campaign that she should have - by law! Nancy Pelosi went on and on about Republicans not declaring lobbyist paid trips, until her own were discovered and she had to amend her own reports. Harry Reid has received thousands from what are commonly called `Abramoff clients'. Teddy speaks about the `little guy', but has received over $700,000 in campaign contributions from trial lawyers, a class one step above homelessness, while incidentally opposing tort reform.

      Clean out the stables by all means. Change the practices. It is not what the people want or deserve. But please, don't try the gross absurdity that the Democrats are pure and the `climate of corruption' is something Republicans brought to Washington. Remember the Clinton campaign contributions from foreign countries, or the last minute Clinton pardons, or the Keating Five, which were four Democrats and tangenially related John McCain brought in largely so there would be - one Republican involved?

      So when those tribes were giving most of their money to Democrats before 1995, and still giving large sums to them after 1995, do you think they expected things in return, from Democrats?

      Clue: Abramoff clients did indeed give money to both Republicans and Democrats. They gave more to the party in power, and we should all believe that if the Democrats were in House control, they wouldn't have gotten the lion's share!

      Puhlease!

      Denis

    •  Just as a mention.... (none)
      ....that might give some perspective regarding corruption and lack of ethics.

      You've got a thread here at KOS urging folks to phone and e-mail Senators about filibustering Alito. One comment provides a link to the US Postal Service site to obtain zip codes, on the grounds that if you tell the picked Senator you are from a zip code that is part of their constituency, they will more likely take notice.

      That's fraud, Kos! It's unethical. It was suggested on your site, though to their credit, other commentators took serious issue with it as wrong.

      But nonetheless, some folks here thought that little bit of fraud for what they thought was their good purpose was okay.

      Slime doesn't have a party affiliation.

      Denis

    •  Jack of Spades (none)
      The numbers, though true and powerful for thinking individuals, aren't necessary. They turn people off, especially the faith slaves whose preferred diet is lies and slander.

      The simple story is that Indians donated more to Democrats than to Republicans, even after Republicans controlled Congress for years. Everyone understands that: Indians vote for Democrats, too. Then Abramoff, the registered Republican lobbyist, was hired by some tribes. Abramoff directed his tribes to send lots of money to his Republicans, and reduce money to Democrats. Meanwhile, Abramoff send big money directly to his Republicans, and none to Democrats.

      After telling someone that simple scenario, the frame is defined. If they challenge how big the increases/decreases were, tell them the blatantly convincing numbers. If they challenge why tribes would change, tell them the blatant truth that Abramoff's Republicans would help tribes open questionable casinos, like "off reservation", and block rival tribes casinos. All the while his Republicans would be taking bribes to rig the casino industry, they'd be running as values Republicans, like Bill Bennett, the compulsive gambler Conservative blowhard hypocrite.

      But all those details are followup. Just hit them with the simple facts. Those are bad enough for most people with a roulette-wheel attention span. The rest who want more facts will have plenty when you double down on the aces with Jacks of (GOP) Clubs

    •  Are the feds investigating the Boulis murder, (none)
      in the course of their Abramoff investigation.  That's what seems to be the implication of Wayne Madsen's new report that Jeb Bush's Florida government is destroying records to impede the Abramoff investigation:

      January 27, 2006 --   John Caylor of www.insider-magazine.com  reports that a well-placed source within the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation has revealed Governor Jeb Bush ordered the destruction and shredding of public records and documents in violation of Florida law. The department maintains oversight and approval of state gaming licensees, slot machines, dog and horse tracks, and jai-alai. In addition, the state government source revealed that Jeb Bush has replaced key members of the Governor's Staff in Tallahassee with personnel from Texas who are overseeing the destruction of state documents. An FBI source has confirmed the destruction of public records by Jeb Bush may be in response to the ongoing criminal proceedings against GOP lobbyist Jack Abramoff and the Federal investigation of the 2001 gangland murder in Miami of Sun Cruz casino boat owner Gus Boulis.

      Question: are the feds really investigating the Boulis murder?  Isn't murder usually a state charge?

    •  Framing: illegal donations=Republican scandal (none)
      Nash Tad nailed it a few posts above. To correctly frame this issue (and fight back against the media distortion) you've got to focus like a laser on the fact that all of the illegal donations were received by Republcans, keep saying the words "Republican", "scandal" "illegal" and "Abramoff" as much as possible. eg:

      "Well, Tweety, the Republicans can and will try to spin this all they want, but even the Republicans can't deny that every single illegal donation Jack Abramoff made went to a Republican candidate, and/or to the Republican Party. I repeat every single illegal Abramoff donation went to Republicans.

      Well, Pumpkinhead, I think all of us here know that Jack Abramoff has worked long and hard for the Republican party, and if your guest, the spokesperson for the Republican Party, has a shred of evidence that someone other than a Republican received illegal donations from Jack Abramoff, s/he ought to present it to the American people and the Justice Department that will be prosecuting this case. Again, this scandal is about illegal donations and I'm afraid this study you refer to doesn't refute the fact that the illegal donations made by Jack Abramoff all went to Republicans."

      Are we clear now Tweety? Understand, Pumpkinhead?
      Abramoff. Illegal. Republican. Scandal.
      Republican scandal.
      Republican scandal.
      Republican scandal.

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