Skip to comments.GOP seeks to expel Jefferson from House
Posted on 06/05/2007 12:42:17 PM PDT by NormsRevenge
WASHINGTON - Republicans moved Tuesday to seek Rep. William J. Jefferson's expulsion from the House, a day after the Louisiana Democrat was indicted on charges of receiving more than $500,000 in bribes.
Jefferson, meanwhile, relinquished his seat on the House Small Business Committee before members of his own party could vote to kick him off the panel.
In a two-paragraph letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi (news, bio, voting record), Jefferson, 60, said he was taking the step "in the light of recent developments in a legal matter."
Republicans, citing Pelosi's election-season promise to run the most ethical House in history, sought Jefferson's expulsion from the chamber, possibly before he comes to trial on the bribery charges.
Republican Minority Leader John Boehner (news, bio, voting record) of Ohio was pushing for a vote later Tuesday on a resolution to bar Jefferson from serving on any House committee and to direct the ethics committee to decide by July 11 whether the allegations in the indictment merit his expulsion, according to a partial draft of the document obtained by The Associated Press.
The final draft may not include a specific deadline by which the ethics committee must rule, according to a Republican leadership aide who spoke on condition of anonymity because the resolution had not been finalized.
It's unusual for the House in a resolution to specifically instruct the ethics committee to report whether a member's expulsion is warranted. Usually such resolutions leave it to the committee to recommend appropriate sanctions after its investigation.
An ethics committee probe seemed certain. Pelosi, D-Calif., later Tuesday was expected to name 10 House Democrats to a pool from which the House ethics committee can pick if it decides to appoint a special subcommittee to investigate the charges against Jefferson, a Democratic leadership aide said. The aide demanded anonymity because the announcement had not yet been made public.
A grand jury in Alexandria, Va., indicted Jefferson on Monday on 16 counts connected to a bribery investigation that could send him to prison for the rest of his life. The charges include racketeering, soliciting bribes, wire fraud, money laundering, obstruction of justice and conspiracy. He faces a possible maximum sentence of 235 years.
The indictment said Jefferson received more than $500,000 in bribes and sought millions more in separate schemes to enrich himself by using his office to broker business deals in Africa. The charges came almost two years after investigators raided Jefferson's home in Washington and found $90,000 in cash stuffed in his freezer.
Jefferson's lawyer has declared his client innocent.
In his letter Tuesday to Pelosi, Jefferson said his resignation from the Small Business Committee, was in the spirit of her leadership on ethics issues.
"In doing so, I, of course, express no admission of guilt or culpability in that or any other matter that may be pending in any court or before the House of Representatives," Jefferson added. "I have supported every ethics and lobbying reform measure that you and our Democratic Majority have authored."
After the FBI had found $90,000 in cash in Jefferson's freezer and alleged that stash was bribe money nearly two years ago, Pelosi succeeded in stripping Jefferson of his seat on the Ways and Means Committee over Jefferson's objection.
The congressman, who represents part of hurricane-ravaged New Orleans, was then re-elected in November to a ninth term in the House. Opening the 110th Congress as House Speaker this year, Pelosi granted him the seat on the Small Business Committee.
Associated Press reporter Larry Margasak contributed to this report.
Representative William Jefferson (D-LA) speaks at a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, in this September 15, 2005 file photo. Jefferson was indicted on June 4, 2007 on 16 criminal counts for conspiring to solicit bribes and pay off a Nigerian official, with $90,000 of an intended bribe found hidden in his home freezer wrapped in aluminum foil. REUTERS/Chris Kleponis/Files (UNITED STATES)
U.S. Attorney Chuck Rosenberg (L) is joined by Assistant Attorney General Alice Fisher (R) as they announce the indictment of Rep. William Jefferson (D-LA) on 16 counts of public corruption, including bribery, in Washington, June 4, 2007. Jefferson was indicted on Monday on 16 criminal counts for conspiring to solicit bribes and pay off a Nigerian official, with $90,000 of an intended bribe found hidden in his home freezer wrapped in aluminum foil. REUTERS/Larry Downing (UNITED STATES)
Go, Boehner! You asked for the job, now prove to us that you really deserve it.
Nancy Pelosi campaigned on the issue of the culture of corruption. Does she think that only Republicans have done things that are corrupt or criminal?
Jefferson should resign his House Seat just as Cunningham, Ney and DeLay did right after they were indicted.
Evidently 'Old Freezer Bag' hasn't quite comprehended that his spinning days are over.
Clearly, this is a case of racism. The FBI planted the money in Jefferson’s freezer. See, anytime a black man makes it in this society the white man has gotta take him down.
This is Al Sharpton’s take.
Sharpton, by the way, still claims the FBI video of Al offering to sell drugs for money was merely a case of him going along so he could become a spy on the bad guys.
What a world.
And I hope he does request Jefferson’s expulsion. But he should not have to; Jefferson should resign. Chances? None.
No deal. Take him down and do it fast. No deal.
‘Republican Minority Leader John Boehner (news, bio, voting record) of Ohio was pushing for a vote later Tuesday on a resolution to bar Jefferson from serving on any House committee and to direct the ethics committee to decide by July 11 whether the allegations in the indictment merit his expulsion, according to a partial draft of the document obtained by The Associated Press. ‘
Excellent politics, Mr Boehner. Get the Democrats on record not doing a thing about this miscreant.
He might take down the entire black caucus.
Its not like Do Nothing Nancy can’t find another corrupt DemoGraft to take his place. Wonder how much Levy Money he stole before the flood??
Pray for W and Our Troops
Follow the money....
He best make sure his insurance is paid up if he does that. That dude will end up in a ditch in Arkansas with 69 bullets in his back.
And the medical examiner will rule it a suicide.
Hastert like a damn fool sought to shield the dirt-bag from Justice.
The Justice Dept takes until now to nail this crook. Are the re-pubs retarded at politics?
I remember the Black Caucus honored Robert Mugabe a few years ago.
I’m wondering if it benefits us more by knocking him off committees yet letting him remain firmly in the Dem camp... a distateful reminder of their hypocrisy.
The Repubs are WRONG and STUPID to do this. They should first PUBLICALLY invite the Dems to do (as much as it will kill them to do so).
And THEN, after the Dems delay, or STALL and WHINE or FAIL to do so, only THEN should the Repubs steps in when it is clear that the Dems WON’T or CAN’T.
In the mean time, the Repubs should hold a press conference every single Monday, same day/time/place and offer the Dems the chance to pull the trigger on Jefferson. They should invite the Congressional Black Causus to do so, they sould offer everyone including NOW to do so and watch how the Dems FAIL to do it themselves.
Only then should the Repubs do it.
As it is the Dems can say the Repubs “ran to the microphone” against a black man, “ran to the microphone” to cover their own failures, “ran to the microphone” to get someone who was helping New Orleans get on its feet.
The smart move would have been to step back and let the Dems stew in their own pot. But the Repubs couldn’t just STFU. Idiot Elephants!
Either way the Repubs win:
- If the Dems pull the trigger the Repubs can call for greater reform and say it’s good for both parties to address corruption while not looking like the bad guys. The Dems will then have fired one of their CBC members.
- If the Dems don’t it would look like the Repubs have to clean up the Dems own mess and that will insulate them from past recent scandals.
Dems have NEVER fired one of their own in public.
Either way the Repubs gain by backing off at times like this. They gain nothing by rushing in.
What’s that axiom: Never interrupt anyone who is digging a hole for themselves.
..."Secretary [of State Madeleine] Albright delegated Africa policy to [U.S. Rep. Donald] Payne [of New Jersey] and the Congressional Black Caucus," Sierra Leone's outspoken ambassador to Washington, John Ernest Leigh, told this reporter.
Jefferson's the least of it.
In a word...yeah!
We can only hope!
Don’t look for SIXTY MINUTES to investigate anytime soon.
There’s one small flaw with your plan, do honestly think those pressers would get ANY coverage?!?
Don’t be ridiculous Dilbert. The dems know that their party defines corruption, they merely perform for the media and the ignorant in their party and claim they will “root out” corruption. Only utter simpletons are unaware that the leftist/ union/ “civil rights” machine epitomizes corruption. And Pelosi is no simpleton.
Jefferson's lawyer has declared his client innocent.
Well, alrighty then! - I guess that wraps this matter up. 8^)
Why expel him, he will just come back over the boarder. Selective punishment.
“Rumor has it that Jefferson is trying to make a deal with the prosecutors. He will give them names of fellow Democratic Congressmen and Senators that are also guilty of corruption.”
That’s the system. Anyone who works that hard to steal will work just as hard to avoid the punishment. Remember, two of his co-criminals are currently doing time after confessing that they were involved with him.
More often than not, it certainly looks that way. Tom Delay ( indict me and I'll quit, I dare ya ) proves the point.
" Lookit, I had $90 large ones in my freezer because, as a compassionate Democrat, I was helping out a distinguished foreign dignitary."
"What happened was I got an email from Nigerian General Kachinga Cheatchusuckah who had a problem. "
"So once Gen Cheatchusuckah transfers Idi Amin's secret Ugandan gold
reserves from the Swiss bank vault to a refrigerated truck I leased........"
I don't give a $h!t about them ... but I have supported ... you ... and our democrat majority.
I was thinking the same thing. But hey, we could give him a new identity and send him to Darfur. Perhaps the Sudanese will be able to help him in this world and into the next.
Do you think that the Dems are worried?
Ain’t that a fact. Pelosi and company are shaking in their boots right now.
The politicians of the State of Louisiana are all corrupt. I hope this blows the lid off what really happened there. Where is all the money they were supposedly spending on the levees before Katrina?