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Monday, August 19, 2013

Congressional Corruption Caught On Voicemail - (Video/Audio)

By Susan Duclos

In the two videos/audios below, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, left a voicemail for a potential donor, but in that message she exposed a clear violation of House Ethics rules.

Holmes mentions outright that she has not received a donation from this donor, but that she is aware that the lobbyist has given to other colleagues of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. Donations are listed in Federal Election Commission reports but it is a violation of the House Ethics rules to use that information to solicit donations, which she is clearly doing.

Another concerning aspect of the call is Holmes constant reference to her "senior" status and her Chairmanship of a subcommittee, in a not-so-subtle attempt at intimidation by pointing out that should this lobbyist not donate to her specifically, he is turning down a senior member of Congress who Chairs a subcommittee highly relevant to his "sector".

Via the details on the first video/audio: House Ethics Manual (2008 Edition): p. 147: "[N]o solicitation of a campaign or political contribution may be linked to an action taken or to be taken by a Member ... in his or her official capacity. ... The Standards Committee has long advised Members ... that they should always exercise caution to avoid even the appearance that solicitations of campaign contributions are connected in any way with an action taken or to be taken in their official capacity. ... [A] Member should not sponsor or participate in any solicitation that offers donors any special access to the Member in the Member's official capacity." p. 150: "[A] Member may not accept any contribution that is linked with an action that the Member has taken or is being asked to take. A corollary of these rules is that Members ... are not to take or withhold any official action on the basis of the campaign contributions or support of the involved individuals .... Members ... are likewise prohibited from threatening punitive action on the basis of such considerations."

Listen for yourself below, then beneath that is the Young Turks report on the same voicemail.

Cross posted at Before It's News