Sunday, December 31, 2006

This is the problem with Congress

No wonder they violate the rules, they get away with not even a slap on the wrist. Democrats and Republicans take care of each other and don't hold each other accountable to the law:

Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) has "accepted responsibility" for possibly violating House rules by requiring his official staff to perform campaign-related work, according to a statement quietly released by the House ethics committee late Friday evening.

The top Republican and Democratic members on the ethics panel, Reps. Doc Hastings (R-Wash.) and Howard Berman (D-Calif.), said in a statement that Conyers acknowledged a "lack of clarity" in communicating what was expected of his official staff and that he accepted responsibility for his actions.

"[Conyers] agreed to take a number of additional, significant steps to ensure that his office complies with all rules and standards regarding campaign and
personal work by congressional staff," they stated. "We have concluded that this matter should be resolved through the issuance of this public statement."

The finding by the ethics panel could spark debate, and perhaps eclipse, the first week of the incoming-Democratic majority’s plans to change the House ethics rules, as well as raise questions about Conyers’ standing to chair the Judiciary Committee.


A spokesman for Incoming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Conyers will remain chairman of the Judiciary Committe.


The Hill reported last March that two former Conyers’ aides alleged that he repeatedly violated House ethics rules by requiring aides to work on local and state
campaigns, and babysit and chauffeur his children. Deanna Maher, a former deputy chief of staff in the Detroit office, and Sydney Rooks, a former legal counsel in his district office, shared numerous letters, memos, e-mails, handwritten notes and expense reports with The Hill.

They also sent the same materials to the House ethics panel, the FBI and the U.S. attorney’s office. House rules allow the chairman and ranking member of the ethics panel to initiate informal inquiries into allegations of misconduct in the absence of a formal complaint.
Read the rest here.


Why should we follow their laws when they don't even follow them?