December 02, 2005
Duke's money is still good in Texas

What do the following people have in common?

Kevin Brady
Michael Burgess
John Carter
Louis Gohmert
Randy Neugebauer
Ted Poe
Pete Sessions

Yes, I know, they're all Republican Congressmen from Texas. They're all also the recipients of campaign contributions from former Rep turned convicted felon Randy "Duke" Cunningham, and as The Stakeholder notes, they have not seen fit as yet to give that money back.

And why should they give it back? Well, for starters, this is where that money may have originated:

"Between the year 2000 and June of 2005 in our district, you conspired to accept bribes in exchange for performance of official duties. Did you do that?" [U.S. District Judge Larry A.] Burns asked Cunningham.

"Yes, your honor," Cunningham replied.

"Did you take both cash payments and payments in kind?"

"Yes, your honor," the congressman said.

So if any of these folks happen to be your Congressman, you might want to ask them what they plan to do with the Duke's money. Let me know what happens if you do.

UPDATE: Looks like the message has been received, at least for the most part:

Two Dallas-area lawmakers, Reps. Pete Sessions of Dallas and Michael Burgess of Flower Mound, said they would donate to charity the sums [Cunningham's American Prosperity] PAC gave them. Mr. Sessions got $3,000 for campaigns in 2000 and 2004 but hasn't picked the charity, spokeswoman Gina Vaughn said.

Dr. Burgess said he'll deliver $1,000 on Saturday to the Black Bookworm, a Fort Worth bookstore where the African-Americans Against AIDS Task Force is raising money for children's Christmas gifts.

"I'll drive the check down there myself," he said.


Texans got $20,000, mostly to campaign accounts, except for [$6,000] to Mr. DeLay's legal fund. The Sugar Land lawmaker is fighting state campaign-law and money laundering charges. [Brent] Perry, the fund trustee, said he's researching House rules to determine if the money can be given to charity. If not, it will be returned to the Cunningham PAC, he said.


Only one Texas lawmaker said he would keep his donation: Rep. Randy Neugebauer of Lubbock, who got $3,000 last year.

"In addition to having been raised in a previous election cycle, these funds were raised legally and in full compliance with federal election laws," spokesman Josh Noland said.


Reps. Kevin Brady of The Woodlands will give his $1,000 to The Salvation Army's hurricane relief efforts, spokeswoman Sarah Stephens said. Two freshmen known as tough-on-crime judges before their elections last year, Reps. Ted Poe of Humble and Louie Gohmert of Tyler, said they'll donate the funds. A Poe aide said he hadn't picked a charity for the $2,000 he got. Mr. Gohmert, who got $3,000, said he'd find one that helps U.S. troops.

Rep. John Carter of Round Rock, also a former judge, got $1,000 but did not respond to repeated inquiries over two days.

So Neugebauer is keeping the cash, and Carter is ducking inquiries. Feel free to keep pursuing those two.

On a related note, though she didn't get any money from the Duke himself, Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison did get two grand from ADCS, Inc., also known as the firm owned by Duke's Co-conspirator #1. You can see that here.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on December 02, 2005 to Scandalized! | TrackBack

OK, guys, this has been happening for decades no matter who gets in, but how do we stop it?

Would publicly financed elections coupled with, for example, required public service political ads on TV and radio and in print do the trick?

And given that the Supreme Court has ruled and will continue to rule that contributions are free speech, how do we deal with that issue?

Personally, I think the publicly financed campaigns are a good idea because I think it would get the GD lobbyists out of the arena and lead to issue-oriented voting.

Recognize of course that the among the big opponents of any such thing would be the TV, radio and print media lobby which rake upon ad revenues during the campaigns!

Any takers?

Posted by: ttyler5 on December 2, 2005 11:40 PM

Please excuse the typos above, my eyes are not aging as well as the rest of me! :^D

But c'mon!!!

I thought in this group there would be at least someone besides me in favor of Campaign Finance Reform!!!

Whatsa matter?

Isn't this your big issue against Delay? You know, the powers of the lobbyists and all?

Posted by: ttyler5 on December 3, 2005 3:49 PM