disclose, denny

Monday, May 29, 2006

blogs: bring Hastert down

it's time to re-publish Democrats.com 's take on the Hastert bribery claims:


Unlike his egomaniacal predecessor Newt Gingrich, House Speaker Denny Hastert likes to stay out of the limelight.

And for good reason. When Hastert opens his mouth, he tends to say cold-hearted things like "It looks like a lot of [New Orleans] could be bulldozed."

But is Denny Hastert's heart cold enough to take bribes to coverup Turkey's Armenian genocide?

According to an investigative report in Vanity Fair by David Rose, Hastert may have taken as much as $500,000 in campaign bribes in October 2000 to kill a Congressional resolution designating the killings of Armenians in Turkey between 1915 and 1923 a genocide.

According to Wikipedia, "Most estimations for the losses between 1915 to 1917-18 range from 600,000 —claimed mostly by the Government of Turkey and Turkish national historians— and from 1.2 to 1.5 million by most of the international community and the scholarship."

The Turkish government rejects the term "genocide," blaming instead "inter-ethnic strife, disease and famine during the turmoil of World War I." But dozens of countries call it "genocide," along with the European Parliament, the U.N., and many U.S. states.

But thanks to Denny Hastert, Congress refuses to call it genocide. And according to Vanity Fair, "a senior official at the Turkish Consulate is said to have claimed in one recording that the price for Hastert to withdraw the resolution would have been at least $500,000."

There is no question that Hastert pulled the Armenian genocide resolution off the floor of Congress on October 19, 2000, after it passed the International Relations Committee by a large majority. (Hastert blames Bill Clinton - as if Hastert ever did Clinton a single favor, besides trying to impeach him!)

The only question is whether he took campaign bribes to do it. As David Rose reported,

According to some of the wiretaps, the F.B.I.’s targets had arranged for tens of thousands of dollars to be paid to Hastert’s campaign funds in small checks. Under Federal Election Commission rules, donations of less than $200 are not required to be itemized in public filings.

Hastert himself was never heard in the recordings, Edmonds told investigators, and it is possible that the claims of covert payments were hollow boasts. Nevertheless, an examination of Hastert’s federal filings shows that the level of un-itemized payments his campaigns received over many years was relatively high. Between April 1996 and December 2002, un-itemized personal donations to the Hastert for Congress Committee amounted to $483,000.

In contrast, un-itemized contributions in the same period to the committee run on behalf of the House majority leader, Tom Delay, Republican of Texas, were only $99,000. An analysis of the filings of four other senior Republicans shows that only one, Clay Shaw of Florida, declared a higher total in un-itemized donations than Hastert over the same period: $552,000. The other three declared far less. Energy and Commerce Committee chairman Joe Barton, of Texas, claimed $265,000; Armed Services Committee chairman Duncan Hunter, of California, got $212,000; and Ways and Means Committee chairman Bill Thomas, of California, recorded $110,000.

Where there's smoke there's usually fire. And the smoke surrounding Hastert's role in this scandal is so thick you need a chainsaw to cut it.

This sounds like a perfect investigation for the progressive blogosphere, right?

So why is this important job falling to a little-known blogger from down under in Australia named Lukery, creator of http://disclosedenny.blogspot.com/

I searched "hastert armenian genocide" in Technorati, Google Blogs, The story has received minimal coverage so far:

I can think of lots of bloggers and activists who should be all over this story:

Let's get the blogosphere's top investigators on this story and help our heroic Australian cousin bring Hastert down!

Friday, May 26, 2006

Hastert and the Rule of Law

Everyone is appropriately excited about Hastert defending the sanctity of the rule-of-law oops precedent oops his office.

Most seem to assume that Hastert's concern relates to the Abramoff bribes contributions - but, hey, the feds probably won't be able to find anything other than contemporaneous promises - and it would be irresponsible for them to speculate about any impropriety in that regard.

Perhaps he is really concerned about the fact possibility that he lied in his response to the FEC regarding his undisclosed contributions.

Or perhaps he is concerned about damning evidence regarding the ongoing investigations that Giraldi described - first:
"The (Turkish lobbying) money involved does not appear to come from the Turkish government, and FBI investigators are trying to determine its source and how it is distributed. Some of it may come from criminal activity, possibly drug trafficking, but much more might come from arms dealing."
"Investigators are also looking at Israel's particular expertise in the illegal sale of US military technology to countries like China and India."
(although I havent seen anything to suggest that Denny is involved with Israel/ China / India)

Maybe Denny is only afraid that about the pictures of him and that nubile goat that he likes to keep in his office. Whatever it is, I suspect that he wont be sleeping too well this weekend. Perhaps Mrs Hastert will ask him why he can't sleep, and why he is sticking up for those mean american-hating democrats.

I'm sure he'll tell her that it's all about the Rule of Law.

Hastert's Deep Throat?

emptywheel on Denny's latest shenanigans.:

Denny managed to take time away from protecting the Congressional desk drawer where he hides all his bribery receipts separation of the powers to angrily deny that he had any bribery receipts. DOJ helpfully issued a statement seemingly supporting the case.


Is anyone else having a Deep Throat tingle? Because I sure am. So let me review what we know.

A federal law enforcement officer, who may or may not be the same guy who met in person with Ross to tell him to get a new cell phone because his phone records were being tracked, tells Ross that Abramoff has squealed about the bribe Denny took to write a letter opposing an Indian casino that would have competed with one of Abramoff's client's casinos. Ross reports that. DOJ denies Denny's a target. Ross reiterates his story. DOJ denies Denny's "in the mix" (must be a former wrestling coach term for "pigs at the trough").

If my logic serves me and the sources are all telling the truth, it would suggest federal investigators know about the bribe Denny took, but they're not investigating it. Is that what this friendly federal law enforcement officer is trying to tell us? Because, like I said, I'm having a Deep Throat tingle."

Perhaps Duncan Hunter is the DeepThroat. Remember what Larisa said:
Luke: Hopefully we can make that an election issue in Hastert's race against John Laesch in November

LA: I dont know - I dont think he's going to be running.

Luke: Wow - really?

LA: I have a feeling that the way things are going - remember, there are factional turf wars much like the kinds you see in organized crime. They're at each others' throats - because greed knows no loyalty. I think he's made a tactical error in attempting to remove Duncan Hunter from the Armed Services Committee.

Remember, regarding the Dubai ports deal, Duncan Hunter recently came forward and said that Dubai had allowed nuclear switches and heavy water to be shipped from Turkey, via Dubai, to Iran, the same switches I referenced above as being accurate but together in the wrong context - and shortly thereafter Hastert tried to remove (I am still trying to firm up what actually occurred) Hunter from the Armed Services Committee.

Luke: That's right - and Dubai rejected a U.S. request to stop the shipment.

LA: Right - and I think that really opens Hastert up - if Hunter wants to put some pressure on. In other words, Duncan Hunter is a fairly powerful individual, and fairly aggressive. Despite my reporting on Hunter in certain business areas of his, he really seems to be very much against outsourcing of security of any sort. There seems to be a principle there for him, and he seems to be very adamant about that. So Hunter and his faction have a lot of ammunition should Hunter want to retain his seat, or whatnot. It gives a lot of power and persuasion to that argument. So it should be interesting how this plays out
And of course, this isn't the first time an investigation into Hastert has been closed down. In an interview Sibel said:
“…what happened was, FBI had this information since 1997. In 1999, the Clinton Administration actually asked the Department of Justice to appoint a Special Prosecutor to investigate Hastert, and certain other elected officials that were not named in this (VF) article, to be investigated formally. And the Department of Justice actually went about appointing this prosecutor, but after the Administration changed they quashed that investigation and they closed it despite the fact they had all sorts of evidence, again I’m talking about wiretaps, documents- paper documents- that was highly explosive and could have been easily used to indict the Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert. That investigation was closed in 2001, and this was around the time I started reporting my cases to the Congress.”
what happens next?

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