Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Ethics Spotlight Now on Reid

Reid Accepted Free Boxing Tickets While a Related Bill Was Pending

By John Solomon
Associated Press
Tuesday, May 30, 2006; Page A03

Senate Democratic Leader Harry M. Reid (Nev.) accepted free ringside tickets from the Nevada Athletic Commission to three professional boxing matches while that state agency was trying to influence him on federal regulation of boxing.

Reid took the free seats for Las Vegas fights between 2003 and 2005 as he was pressing legislation to increase government oversight of the sport, including the creation of a federal boxing commission that Nevada's agency feared might usurp its authority.

A few months after the fundraiser, Reid did sponsor a spending bill that targeted $100,000 to another Abramoff tribe, the Chitimacha of Louisiana, to pay for a soil erosion study for which Ayoob was lobbying. Reid said he sponsored the provision because Louisiana lawmakers sent him a letter requesting it.

Abramoff, a Republican lobbyist, has pleaded guilty in a widespread corruption probe of Capitol Hill. Reid used that conviction earlier this year to accuse Republicans of fostering a culture of corruption inside Congress.


Another Abramhoff donation recipient doing something ethically questionable? Say it ain't so!
The really great thing about the Abramhoff scandal is it gave the press a nice list of lawmakers to keep an eye on. And by the time its all said and done those politicians that are corrupt and probably a few that aren't may find themselves out of office due to their ties to Abramhoff. That would send a message that the American people will not tolerate impropriety or even the appearance of it. And that would do more good than any campaign finance reform bill that is likely to pass anytime in the forseeable future.