Skip to main content

Senate Ethics Committe report

Public record so I'm going to quote at will.

Not about Senator Ensign, his tawdry affair, and the crimes he committed as a consequence.

No, I'm going to focus on Senator Tom Coburn, whose name appears throughout the Ethics Committee report.

Here goes.

Page 13


When Mr. Hampton returned from the CODEL trip, he immediately sought the assistance of Tim Coe, Senator Ensign s long-time spiritual advisor, to assist with ending the affair. Mr. Coe recommended that they bring in a higher authority, someone much bigger than me, and approached Senator Tom Coburn. Senator Coburn was also a resident of the C Street Center, and was a close spiritual and personal confidant to Tim Coe and to Senator Ensign.
Senator Coburn, Mr. Coe, David Coe (Tim Coe s brother and fellow spiritual advisor to the International Foundation), Mr. Hampton, and Marty Sherman decided to confront Senator Ensign about the affair and did so as soon as he returned to Washington, D.C. from the CODEL on Valentine s Day, February 14, 2008. They confronted Senator Ensign at the C Street House.
Senator Ensign started to lie, but he was told that we know the truth, and then Senator Ensign confessed to the affair. Senator Ensign was told that the affair had to stop. Mr. Hampton was very emotional during the meeting, and at one point got very close to a physical confrontation with Senator Ensign. Senator Coburn asked Mr. Hampton to leave, stating we ll take it from here. We ll take care of this.

Page 14


Mr. Coe continued his efforts to stop the affair. Mr. Coe decided that Senator Coburn was not big enough, so he decided to involve Senator Ensign s father, Michael Ensign. Mr. Coe gave Michael Ensign s cell phone number to Senator Coburn, and Senator Coburn agreed to call Michael Ensign. According to Mr. Coe s detailed and specific recollection, a call between Senator Coburn and Michael Ensign absolutely occurred.
Senator Coburn denied speaking with Michael Ensign after he was informed about the affair. Michael Ensign did not recall whether a call with Senator Coburn had taken place, but in response to a question from the Special Counsel, Michael Ensign allowed as how the call may have taken place.

Is this possibly perjury? About an affair? I seem to recall that back in the 1990's that became a controversial topic.

Page 15


Additionally, a second confrontation occurred at the C Street Center approximately a month after the February 14, 2008 intervention. The intervention was instigated by Senator Coburn. Senator Coburn stated I can t take this any more. I ve got to tell these guys. Mr. Sherman and others, including Members of Congress, went to Senator Ensign s bedroom at the C Street Center and confronted him about the affair. It appeared that Senator Ensign got it and was more receptive to actually stopping the affair. According to Mr. Coe, Senator Ensign lied about the affair and how it persisted, and Mr. Coe did not trust him going forward. Also, as noted above, Mr. Sherman did not believe that the affair was going to end after the initial intervention because he did not believe Senator Ensign.

Page 16


According to Mr. Sherman, Senator Coburn was aware of the transition plan for relocating the Hamptons to Colorado, and was in favor of the plan. According to Mr. Coe, Senator Coburn was supportive of the plan to provide transition finances. Senator Coburn was also supportive of putting the Hampton house on the market to see if it could get sold. Mr. Coe considered Senator Coburn part of the team to work out the financial piece of the issues. According to Mr. Coe, Doug was more confident talking to Senator Coburn about finances than he was us, and Mr. Hampton thought Senator Coburn could deliver John s father, who was wealthy. Senator Coburn played a support role, and encouraged Senator Ensign to consider the plans developed by Mr. Coe and others regarding transition and separation.

The "finances" wound up including $96,000 in payments from the Ensign family trust that were probably illegal. Senator Coburn may very well have known of these illegal payments.

Page 37 and 38


Mr. Hampton sought legal counsel. He was referred to Las Vegas attorney Daniel Albregts. Mr. Albregts, a former Public Defender who primarily handled criminal matters but also handled some civil matters, met Mr. Hampton in April 2009. According to Mr. Albregts, Mr. Hampton came in and told a jaw dropping story, and asked him to be his counsel to determine whether he had a cause of action against Senator Ensign. Mr. Hampton was interested in securing enough money to relocate and start over.
Mr. Albregts did not know who to contact on Senator Ensign s behalf, so he called the Senator directly. After he introduced himself, there was a pregnant pause. Senator Ensign let out a sigh and said why did he have to get lawyers involved? Senator Ensign said he would get back to Mr. Albregts, but did not do so.
Mr. Hampton then told Mr. Albregts that Senator Coburn was expecting his call to
continue the negotiations. Senator Coburn told Mr. Hampton that he wanted to get involved with the issue. Mr. Albregts recalled that the communications he had with Senator Coburn occurred the week before Memorial Day 2009. Mr. Albregts understood that Senator Coburn was going to act as an intermediary between Senator Ensign and Mr. Hampton.
Mr. Albregts spoke with Senator Coburn on three occasions, all on May 22, 2009. Mr.
Albregts first had a five-minute call with Senator Coburn. Senator Coburn said that he wanted to help Doug out. Senator Coburn also stated that he liked Doug Hampton, felt bad about what happened, and he was glad that they retained counsel to resolve this issue. Senator Coburn told Mr. Albregts to have Mr. Hampton tell him what he thinks he needs to start over, and Senator Coburn would then take that to the Ensigns.
Mr. Albregts had an eight-minute call with Senator Coburn approximately an hour later.
Senator Coburn recalled that he was on his tractor at his home mowing his lawn at the time, and was annoyed to receive the call in the middle of that task. Mr. Albregts tried to get a ballpark estimate from Senator Coburn as to the amount he would be comfortable with. Mr. Albregts proposed $8 million based on a document Doug Hampton prepared. According to Mr. Albregts, Senator Coburn said that the figure was absolutely ridiculous. Senator Coburn then stated that the Ensigns should buy the Hamptons home because it is so close to the Ensigns, and the Hamptons should receive an amount of money above and beyond that to start over, buy a new home, have some living money while they were looking for new employment, and possibly some seed money to send the children off to college. Senator Coburn stated that that s what I ve thought from day one would be fair, but said that $8 million was nowhere close to a reasonable figure. Senator Coburn told Mr. Albregts to figure out what those amounts would be, and call him back.
Mr. Albregts called Senator Coburn back for the final time with this revised figure on the same day in a five-minute call. Per Mr. Albregts, Senator Coburn responded by stating that okay, that s what I had in mind and I think is fair and said he would take the figure to the Ensigns. Mr. Albregts later heard from Mr. Hampton that Senator Ensign refused the revised offer. Senator Coburn testified that he told Mr. Hampton s attorney, Mr. Albregts, in May 2009 that he was not the negotiator, and it s got to be something apropos. Senator Coburn also testified that he did not propose any resolution, but was simply going to pass information to Senator Ensign. Mr. Albregts testified that Senator Coburn took an active role in the negotiations between Mr. Hampton and Senator Ensign, and this role included proposing specific resolutions.

Again, Coburn is flatly contradicting other witnesses and minimizing his own involvement - in sworn testimony.

Page 47


On October 6, 2009, CREW submitted a supplemental letter to the Committee outlining additional information that CREW believed relevant to an investigation of Senator Ensign.
That submission raised additional questions regarding Senator Ensign s conduct, including with respect to potential post-employment lobbying ban violations by Doug Hampton, and issues related to apparent payments to the Hamptons. It also requested an investigation into Senator Coburn s role with respect to the settlement negotiations between Senator Ensign and Mr. Hampton.

It's not just me. CREW wants an investigation, too.

I would say there is considerable evidence that Senator Coburn made false statements to the Senate Ethics committee - his testimony contradicts that of other witnesses at several points. There is also evidence that he was part of arranging illegal payments which were supposed to be in the millions of dollars.

Tom Coburn ought to have an investigation of his own.

Also on page 13 this salacious quote


On February 16, 2008, two days after the intervention, Tim Coe received a call from Doug Hampton. Mr. Hampton was looking for the Senator to have him sign some documents for the NRSC, and saw his car and Ms. Hampton s car parked in a parking lot of a hotel close to their Summerlin neighborhood. Mr. Coe pleaded with him [Hampton] to go home. Mr. Coe called Senator Ensign and stated I know exactly where you are. I know exactly what you are doing. Put your pants on and go home. Senator Ensign initially said he would not leave the hotel room, telling Mr. Coe I can t, I love her [Ms. Hampton]. Senator Ensign ultimately agreed to leave the hotel. After he left the hotel, Senator Ensign told Mr. Coe that he wanted to marry Ms. Hampton.
Poll

Should an investigation of Tom Coburn be conducted?

92%129 votes
2%4 votes
2%4 votes
1%2 votes

| 139 votes | Vote | Results

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site