Politics

Ethics Questions Put Obama on the Spot

Giddy “news” reports on Illinois Sen. Barack Obama’s every word, thought and deed seem to have topped the headlines for the past few weeks. It’s clear the presidential race for 2008 is off and running, even if “unofficial” candidates such as Obama and Sen. Hillary Clinton are still being coy about their true intentions.

In between the “fluff and style” news items, there have been reports of Obama’s connections to Antoine “Tony” Rezko. Rezko, who was indicted in October 2006 for a multimillion dollar kick-back scheme, has been a longtime supporter of Obama. Rezko’s companies have donated large sums to Obama’s campaigns. Rezko also hosted a fundraiser for Obama. Completing the shady political trifecta—there’s even a questionable real estate deal between the two men.

Last week, Obama denied granting an internship in his Capitol Hill office to a 20-year-old student recommended by his corrupt buddy. The highly competitive internship was one of 98 Illinois spots filled from a pool of 350 applicants and Rezko wanted a friend’s son to get the job. The intern’s father is a longtime Rezko associate who, incidentally, has contributed thousands of dollars to Obama’s political campaigns.
 
Sandy Berger’s Crime
 
We finally have all of the salacious details of Clinton National Security Adviser Sandy Berger’s criminal behavior in absconding with classified documents from the National Archives with the release of an Archives inspector general report. In 2003, Berger reviewed classified Clinton-era records pertaining to terrorism in preparation for testimony before the 9/11 Commission. Berger lied about taking the classified documents from the Archives, and then later admitted to stealing the documents from the building and sliding them under a construction trailer. He later retrieved the stolen classified documents from the construction area and returned with them to his office, where he destroyed several of the records with scissors.
 
In my opinion, Berger was going to very great lengths to hide something incredibly damning about the Clinton administration’s actions—or lack thereof—concerning international terrorism. There’s never been an adequate explanation from Berger about what he was so terribly desperate to destroy. To make matters worse, the Bush Justice Department brokered a “sweetheart deal” with Berger’s attorney, wherein Berger’s treachery only earned him a $50,000 fine, 100 hours of community service and a three-year bar from accessing classified material. What a travesty of justice! Shame on the Bush administration for their blatant “Washington Insider” coddling of the repugnant Mr. Berger!  Any ordinary citizen would be doing “hard time.”
 
Clintons Held Accountable
 
Judicial Watch’s persistence and tenacity in holding the Clintons’ accountable was certified by a federal appeals court in Washington, D.C. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit upheld the vast majority of a lower court award to Judicial Watch of nearly $900,000 in attorney’s fees and costs in a lawsuit related to the Clinton fundraising scandals (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of Commerce, Appeal No. 05-5366).

The fees were awarded on Dec. 1, 2006, after a nearly decade-long court battle waged by Judicial Watch. The scandal involved a scheme by Clinton administration officials to sell seats on taxpayer-funded trade missions in exchange for campaign contributions to the 1996 Clinton-Gore campaign.

Frankly, both of the Clintons still have a lot to answer concerning this scandal. Let’s see if any of the mainstream media dare to bring the matter up with either Bill or Hillary.


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