Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Murtha's pork diet and Abscam past raising eyebrows

Nancy Pelosi's choice to be House Majority Leader, John "Cut and Run" Murtha may not be the ideal choice that it once seemed, as AP reports.

The portly Pennsylvania Democrat has been in Congress for a long time, which means he's left some notable footprints over the years.

From AP:

Murtha, a former Marine who generally has supported U.S. military efforts, has gained considerable attention this year for his criticism of the administration's Iraq war policies. He steered Pelosi's winning campaign in 2001 against Hoyer for the No. 2 Democratic leadership post, and his supporters say Pelosi deserves a more loyal wingman.

But Murtha is also a controversial figure. He was investigated in 1980 as part of the Abscam bribery sting, but was the only lawmaker involved who wasn't charged criminally.

FBI agents pretending to represent an Arab sheik wanting to reside in the United States and seeking investment opportunities approached Murtha and several other lawmakers with offers of bribes.

When offered $50,000, Murtha is recorded as saying, "I'm not interested ... at this point." A grand jury declined to prosecute Murtha, and the House ethics committee issued no findings against him. On MSNBC Wednesday, Murtha said, "I told them I wanted investment in my district. They put $50,000 on the table and I said, 'I'm not interested.'"

Maybe. I just now saw the tape with Murtha and the undercover FBI agent and Murtha does not come off well.

According to the same AP article, Murtha developed a reputation for horse-trading with Republicans in exchange for pork projects in his district.

Keep it up, Dems.

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