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The Other Mr. Jefferson
I don't know how you do it -- how you get elected, and entrusted, to represent people from your state in Washington, D.C., and instead, it seems, if the accusations are true, you mainly represent your own wallet (and those of your children...if that's more than a ploy to score more cash). It's treason by way of the wallet. From a Washington Post editorial, the sordid allegations from the indictment of Louisiana Dem William Jefferson:

TO READ the indictment of Rep. William J. Jefferson is to wonder how, if the allegations are true, the Louisiana Democrat, so busy soliciting and dispensing bribes, had any time left over for his day job. The 16-count indictment handed up yesterday by a federal grand jury in Alexandria is staggering in the scope and audacity of the bribery schemes it portrays Mr. Jefferson as having peddled, from sugar plant and waste recycling projects in Nigeria to telecommunications deals in Ghana to oil concessions in Equatorial Guinea to satellite transmission contracts in Botswana to offshore oil rights in Sao Tome and Principe. All this might explain why it took nearly two years for prosecutors to secure the indictment after a search of Mr. Jefferson's home found $90,000 wrapped in tin foil in his freezer.

The indictment describes how Mr. Jefferson, who has a law degree from Harvard and a masters in taxation from Georgetown, allegedly arranged for a lengthy menu of payoffs to shell companies he set up with family members: "monthly fees and retainers, consulting fees, percentage shares of revenue and profit, flat fees per item sold, and stock ownership in the companies seeking his official assistance." The lawmaker is accused of accepting some $500,000 in bribes. "I make a deal for my children," Mr. Jefferson allegedly told an associate as he was trying to bump up his ownership stake in one company from 7 percent to as much as 20 percent. "It wouldn't be for me."

Well, isn't that special. You know, I can be a pretty cynical girl, but sometimes I'm just downright naive. I just don't know how you do this sort of thing.

Posted by aalkon at June 6, 2007 9:59 AM

Comments

Like he said: for his children. What a saint.

Posted by: Paul Hrissikopoulos at June 6, 2007 7:00 AM

I just don't know how you do this sort of thing.

Well, it seems he didn't either. ;-) Whenever I read a story like this I wonder how many of these people never get caught because they bribed all the right people. His "I'm doing it for the kids" remark is hilarious, though...

Posted by: Rainer at June 6, 2007 7:16 AM

Despite the scandal, Jefferson was re-elected by a wide margin in 2006.

If THAT doesn't bother his constituents, then Jefferson truly is their "representative."

Posted by: Doobie at June 7, 2007 7:14 PM

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