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WH’s Federal Crimes In 2 Primary Races?

This is a nice follow up on the Sestak news that we posted last week, from the American Spectator:

Congressman Joe Sestak, D-Pa., speaks at a campaign stop in Pittsburgh, Friday, Feb. 19, 2010.

White House Accused of Federal Crime in Specter, Bennett Races

By Jeffrey Lord on 2.22.10

"Whoever solicits or receives … any….thing of value, in consideration of the promise of support or use of influence in obtaining for any person any appointive office or place under the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both." — 18 USC Sec. 211 — Bribery, Graft and Conflicts of Interest: Acceptance or solicitation to obtain appointive public office

"In the face of a White House denial, U.S. Rep. Joe Sestak stuck to his story yesterday that the Obama administration offered him a "high-ranking" government post if he would not run against U.S. Sen. Arlen Specter in Pennsylvania’s Democratic primary." — Philadelphia Inquirer, February 19, 2010

"D.C. job alleged as attempt to deter Romanoff" –Denver Post, September 27, 2009

A bombshell has just exploded in the 2010 elections.

For the second time in five months, the Obama White House is being accused — by Democrats — of offering high ranking government jobs in return for political favors. What no one is reporting is that this is a violation of federal law that can lead to prison time, a fine or both, according to Title 18, Chapter 11, Section 211 of the United States Code.

The jobs in question? Secretary of the Navy and a position within the U.S. Agency for International Development.

The favor requested in return? Withdrawal from Senate challenges to two sitting United States Senators, both Democrats supported by President Obama. The Senators are Arlen Specter in Pennsylvania and Michael Bennett in Colorado.

On Friday, Pennsylvania Congressman Joe Sestak, the Democrat challenging Specter for re-nomination, launched the controversy by accusing the Obama White House of offering him a federal job in exchange for his agreeing to abandon his race against Specter.

In August of 2009, the Denver Post reported last September, Deputy White House Chief of Staff Jim Messina "offered specific suggestions" for a job in the Obama Administration to Colorado Democrat Andrew Romanoff, a former state House Speaker, if Romanoff would agree to abandon a nomination challenge to U.S. Senator Michael Bennett. Bennett was appointed to the seat upon the resignation of then-Senator Ken Salazar after Salazar was appointed by Obama to serve as Secretary of the Interior. According to the Post, the specific job mentioned was in the U.S. Agency for International Development. The Post cited "several sources who described the communication to The Denver Post."

The paper also describes Messina as "President Barack Obama’s deputy chief of staff and a storied fixer in the White House political shop." Messina’s immediate boss is White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel.

Sestak is standing by his story. Romanoff refused to discuss it with the Denver paper. In both instances the White House has denied the offers took place…

This is the stuff of congressional investigations and cable news alerts, as an array of questions will inevitably start being asked of the Obama White House.

Here are but a few lines of inquiry, some inevitably straight out of Watergate.

* Who in the White House had this conversation with Congressman Sestak?

* Did Deputy Chief of Staff Messina have the same conversation with Sestak he is alleged to have had with Romanoff — and has he or anyone else on the White House staff had similar conversations with other candidates that promise federal jobs for political favors?

* They keep logs of these calls. How quickly will they be produced?

* How quickly would e-mails between the White House, Sestak, Specter, Romanoff and Bennet be produced?

* Secretary of the Navy is an important job. Did this job offer or the reported offer of the US AID position to Romanoff have the approval of President Obama or Vice President Biden?

* What did the President know and when did he know it?

* What did the Vice President know and when did he know it? (Note: Vice President Biden, in this tale, is Specter’s longtime friend who takes credit for luring Specter to switch parties. Can it really be that an offer of Secretary of the Navy to get Sestak out of Specter’s race would not be known and or approved by the Vice President? Does Messina or some other White House staffer — like Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel — have that authority?)

* What did White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel know, and when did he know it?

* What did Congressman Sestak know and when did he know it? Was he aware that the offer of a federal job in return for a political favor — his withdrawal from the Senate race — could open the White House to a criminal investigation?

* What did Senator Specter know about any of this and when did he know it? .

* What did Governor Rendell, who, as the titular leader of Pennsylvania Democrats, is throwing his political weight and machine to his old friend Specter, know about this? And when did he know it?

* Will the Department of Justice be looking into these two separate news stories, one supplied by a sitting United States Congressman, that paint a clear picture of jobs for political favors?

* Will Attorney General Holder recuse himself from such an investigation? …

"It is a federal offense," said John F. Kennedy [in the spring of 1960], "to offer any man a federal job in return for a favor."

And so it is.

Jeffrey Lord is a former Reagan White House political director and author.

If only we had a mainstream media that would investigate such blatant shenanigans.

But we don’t, unless of course there is a chance that a Republican is involved.

This article was posted by Steve on Monday, February 22nd, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

7 Responses to “WH’s Federal Crimes In 2 Primary Races?”

  1. Oracle says:

    …and who would be surprised by these revelations?

    • JohnMG says:

      Move along, folks. Nothing to see here. Move along!

      (It’s gonna get reeeeeal crowded under the bus.)

  2. bill says:

    ZERO uses Kenyan rules …

  3. BannedbytheTaliban says:

    It seems to me that this is more damning than Watergate, at the very least, more detrimental to America than Monica. Why aren’t GOP lawmakers calling for an investigation? And should we be surprised when a socialist uses tactics that undermine democracy?

  4. joeblough says:

    When Glenn Beck complains that the Republicans are no better than the Democrats they whine like little girls.

    Where are they now? Are they calling for an investigation?

  5. Grzegorz says:

    Yeah, right! What’s the fuss all about? OK, kids repeat after me: “Precisely diddly zero-point squat will be done about this.” And feel free to quote me.

  6. Mithrandir says:

    This is why I can’t stand to see Hillary Clinton and the rest of our government looking under every rock, and every spider-hole in Iran and Pakistan and then grandstanding about some nuclear project or human rights violation somewhere. . .

    The only people who should be deployed to protect rights is our own troops in our own country. The only place the U.N. needs to investigate corruption and human rights is right outside their complex in New York.

    I am just desensitized to the Iran nuke program, the beheadings in some country with -istan in its name, or human rights violation in China, it just pales in comparison to how crooked the United States really is sometimes.

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