Thursday, January 05, 2006

Questions unasked and unanswered

about Green, Ryan links to Abramoff

As fallout from the exploding Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal drifts over Wisconsin, some Republicans are seeking shelter while others are hoping a little A (for Abramoff)-bomb radiation won't hurt anything.

Today's Journal Sentinel coverage lets Wisconsin Congressmen and their staffers off pretty easily so far. It left some questions unanswered, and others unasked.

Rep. Paul Ryan moved quickly to get rid of a $949 contribution he got from Abramoff in 2000. It's interesting to note that he didn't say he'd already spent it, which is his excuse for not returning $25,000 in political action committee money from the embattled and indicted Rep. Tom DeLay.

You also have to wonder about the $949 contribution, which Ryan gave to charity. Donations of odd amounts usually indicate that they are in-kind contributions rather than direct gifts. Did Abramoff pay for a Ryan fundraiser?

Ryan said he didn't know Abramoff, the paper reported. It's hard to find anyone who knows the guy these days. How did he every get anything accomplished in the House?

The story also says: "The majority of Abramoff's donations went to Republicans."

Actually, every dollar Abramoff and his wife gave went to Republicans. The only ties to any Democrats are contributions from one of his clients, an Indian tribe. The Abramoffs never gave a Democrat a nickel.

Then there's this little dance:

Web log reports are denied

Also Wednesday, Mark Graul, former chief of staff to Green, one of two Republican candidates for governor, denied reports on a Web log ( that Graul repeatedly asked an Abramoff aide for tickets for himself to Washington events such as pro wrestling matches, sporting events and even a rock concert.

Graul, who is now managing Green's campaign for governor, said the report was written by a "liberal blogger with an ax to grind." Graul said he hasn't seen the original documents on which the blog was based.

According to the blog, Graul's requests for tickets were relayed to Abramoff or his aides through Jennifer Calvert, who worked for a Washington lobbying firm.

"The only thing that I recall attending with Jennifer Calvert was a Bucks game," said Graul, who denied making repeated requests for favors and had no explanation for why his name repeatedly shows up on documents on the blog as requesting tickets for six Washington events in 2000 and 2001.

"I've never met Jack Abramoff in my life," Graul said.
The documents in question are readily available. I've posted links several times, if Graul wants to see them. Graul hasn't seen "the original documents," he says. Does he claim these documents are phony?

The Wisconsin news media continues to let him get away with that bobbing and weaving. Graul says he doesn't know Abramoff. Does he say he doesn't know Susan Ralston, the Abramoff staffer who took care of his free ticket needs?

The media's let Green get away with murder, too, dodging questions about Graul by saying he has never asked Graul whether he knew or had a relationship with Abramoff staffers.

Don't you think it's about time for Green to ask his campaign manager that question -- and for Graul to have a look at those documents?

The reporting on this has been pathetic.

Then there's the DeLay money, where Green has given about 27 different answers to the question of whether he will return $30,000 he's gotten from DeLay. His primary opponent, Scott Walker, says he should:

Graul responded to Walker's statement this week that Green should have already returned some $30,000 he got from a fund controlled by indicted U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay (R-Texas), who has ties to Abramoff.

Walker "is incredibly off base," Graul said. "Mark Green has already said if Tom DeLay is convicted of anything, he's going to divest himself of any money" from DeLay.
That would be news, if true. Green's last statement on the matter was that he had spent all but $2,000 of the $30,000 before forming a campaign committee to run for governor, and that he would give back the $2,000 if DeLay is convicted. Graul makes it sound as though Green will dispose of the whole $30,000. He should do himself a favor and get rid of it now.

Meanwhile, Grumps at the Happy Circumstance says that the giving spirit of Republicans warms the heart.


At 12:32 PM, Blogger Henry Street said...

All this stuff seem like we're trying to make Chicken Salad out of Chicken you know what in regards to Green. What really should be made a bigger deal out of id Doyle's Connections to Hurtgen. The funds accepted from Knight Infrastructues, the tobbacco settelment monies, Dole's non-investigation into DOA, SWIB, Miller Park and all the other deals Hurtgen and Bear Stearns were involved with when he was AG. Just because Hurtgen is married to Jessica Doyle's cousin does that mean he should get an 11th hour fund raiser? How connected are Doyle and Hurtgen?

At 12:57 PM, Blogger Xoff said...

Is the GOP headquarters or caucus on Henry Street now? Get back to work. (Or is this your job?)

At 1:01 PM, Blogger Henry Street said...

This stuff happened under Tommy...Doyle has jsut been a facilitator to get what he wanted after...He is related to Hurtgen that is a fact...Prange is Jessica Doyle's Cousin.

At 1:09 PM, Blogger Henry Street said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 1:22 PM, Blogger Henry Street said...

Were you the one to organize teh 11th hour fund raiser for Hurtgen and Prange with Doyle? What's up with all the Knight Infrastructure money Doyle hauled in...guess he didn't know that is what's getting his Illinois counterpart in trouble.


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