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CREW: keeping track of corrupt politicians without fear or favor

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It’s one thing to call politicians corrupt. It’s another, and more credible, thing to name the worst and back up the charges. But that’s what Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington has done.

If you find corruption in government abhorrent and appalling — let alone a sinful waste of your tax dollars — then you’ll find the 22 citations of corruption in “Beyond DeLay” a frightful but compelling read.

CREW calls itself “a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to promoting ethics and accountability in government and public life by targeting government officials — regardless of party affiliation — who sacrifice the common good to special interests.” [Emphasis added.]

CREW has released its third annual report on the most corrupt members of Congress. It’s also provided follow-ups to those named in earlier reports.

This is more than just a list of ne’er-do-well politicians. Each has a detailed report, with footnoted sources. What’s notably absent is partisan snark. CREW, staffed by veteran lawyers, uses sound research and lets the chips fall where they may.

CREW does much more. It has, for example, sued the White House for not responding to its earlier Freedom of Information Act request for five million “missing” e-mails. It has created a review system that allows the public to more easily review documents CREW has obtained through FOIA requests. It has filed ethics complaints and requests, such as its letter asking that Sen. Ted Stevens be removed from committee assignments because of the FBI investigation into his financial affairs. (Not surprisingly, Sen. Stevens made the Beyond DeLay report.)

This site is worth watching. CREW does not appear to be a shoot-first, ask-questions-later organization. It seems to methodically and thoroughly do its homework. That’s refreshing.

Oh, and the featured foul ones for 2007? Here’s CREW’s list:

Members of the Senate:
Sen. Pete V. Domenici (R-NM)
Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY)
Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK)
Sen. Ted Stevens (R-AK)
Members of the House:
Rep. Ken Calvert (R-CA)
Rep. John T. Doolittle (R-CA)
Rep. Tom Feeney (R-FL)
Rep. Doc Hastings (R-WA)
Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA)
Rep. William J. Jefferson (D-LA)
Rep. Jerry Lewis (R-CA)
Rep. Gary G. Miller (R-CA)
Rep. Alan B. Mollohan (D-WV)
Rep. Timothy F. Murphy (R-PA)
Rep. John P. Murtha (D-PA)
Rep. Steve Pearce (R-NM)
Rep. Rick Renzi (R-AZ)
Rep. Harold Rogers (R-KY)
Rep. David Scott (D-GA)
Rep. Don Young (R-AK)
Rep. Jerry Weller (R-IL)
Rep. Heather A. Wilson (R-NM)
Dishonorable Mention:
Sen. Larry Craig (R-ID)
Sen. David Vitter (R-LA)

xpost: Scholars & Rogues

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Written by Dr. Denny Wilkins

September 18, 2007 at 6:22 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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