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Facing ‘Obligations’ From Leadership, Democrat Congresswoman Leaves Voicemail for Lobbyist Cash
Breitbart / BIGGOVERNMENT ^ | 9/15/2010 | Capitol Confidential

Posted on 09/15/2010 8:33:09 PM PDT by ReagansRaiders

A couple weeks ago, House Member Eleanor Holmes Norton made a fundraising call to a lobbyist. The lobbyist wasn’t available, so Holmes Norton left a voicemail.

We have been given a copy of that message. The audio is below.

By way of background, with their prospects for November quickly deteriorating, Congressional Democrats are scrambling to assemble the financial resources they hope can stave off their electoral armageddon. Speaker Pelosi and her leadership team are putting a lot of pressure on Democrat members to pony up campaign contributions to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. In the article linked above, Politico noted:

In August, Pelosi and other top leaders wrote members, saying, “We need to know your commitment is to maintaining a strong Democratic majority now” and pleading with them to call “to let us know what you are able to do and when.”

The pressure is especially strong on members from “safe” districts, who need little campaign money of their own to win reelection. The catch, though, is that many of these members haven’t amassed vast campaign war-chests, for the simple reason that they haven’t needed them. So, they are scrambling to meet their Pelosi-imposed obligations. Holmes Norton is from one such “safe” district–the District of Columbia.

In the following voicemail recording, Holmes Norton seeks a campaign contribution from the lobbyist and even mentions that she hadn’t previously asked for a donation. Such is the pressure Speaker Pelosi has placed on the members. But, it is the content of Holmes Norton’s message that is interesting. (Note: the first few seconds of the recording, where the name of the lobbyist is said by Holmes Norton, have been redacted by the source.)

Her message raises many concerns.

1. At the very beginning of the message, Holmes Norton notes that the lobbyist:

ha[s] given to other colleagues of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee

Beyond being a bit heavy-handed, where did she get this information? Such donations are listed in FEC reports, but it is a violation to use that information to solicit campaign donations.

2. More serious, however, is her frequent mention of her seniority and her Chairmanship of a subcommittee. She is attempting to solicit funds based on her past actions taken in her official capacity in Congress. She is implying to the lobbyist that, should he decline to donate, he will be turning down a senior member of Congress who Chairs a subcommittee highly relevant to his “sector”.

3. Worse than that, she details her role overseeing a large economic development project in the District, funded by “stimulus” funds. It would appear that either the lobbyist has an interest in this project, or the Congresswoman thinks he does, as she states she is “frankly surprised” the lobbyist hasn’t given to her. Especially, she notes, because of her long and deep work …in fact it has been by major work on the committee and subcommittee it’s been essentially in your sector “In your sector.” This raises additional concerns, and we note potentially relevant laws here:

She who promises, directly or indirectly, any government contract or other government benefit (provided for or made possible by any Act of Congress) as a reward for a political contribution shall be guilty of a misdemeanor (18 U.S.C. § 600).

She who attempts to cause anyone to make a political contribution by denying or threatening to deny any government payment or other government benefit (provided for or made possible, in whole or in part, by any Act of Congress) shall be guilty of a misdemeanor (18 U.S.C. § 601).

Then there are the House Ethics rules, according to 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.”

4. We don’t know from where she made this call, but it is a relevant inquiry. It is, after all, illegal to solicit campaign funds on federal property.

As Holmes Norton repeatedly notes on the call, she is a senior member of Congress. She knows or should know all of this. First elected to Congress in 1990, she took her law degree from Yale University and clerked for U.S. District Court Judge Leon Higginbotham before working as an assistant legal director at the ACLU, law professor at NYU, Chairman of the NYC Human Rights Commission, and Chairman of the EEOC. She is a tenured law professor at Georgetown University and serves on the boards of three Fortune 500 companies. That a Member like Holmes Norton would leave the foregoing voicemail message must be a testament to the kind of pressure Speaker Pelosi has put on her members. Indeed, she acknowledges this in the call:

As the senior member of the um, committee and a sub-committee chair, we have (chuckles) obligations to raise, uh funds. And, I think it must have been me who hasn’t, frankly, uh, done my homework to ask for a contribution earlier. So I’m trying to make up for it by asking for one now, when we particularly, uh, need, uh contributions, particularly those of us who have the seniority and chairmanships and are in a position to raise the funds.

Note: Beginning this morning, we made several attempts throughout the day to contact Holmes Norton’s office. At least two email requests for comments were sent to the Congresswoman’s Communications Director. Three phones calls and messages were also left. None of these were returned. We made clear we were on deadline, but we held the story for almost an entire day to give Holmes Norton’s office a chance to respond. If we receive a response from her office, we will update the post.

Below is the full transcript of the call:

This is, uh, Eleanor Norton, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton. Uh, I noticed that you have given to uh, other colleagues on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. I am a, um, Senior Member, a twenty year veteran and am Chair of the Sub-committee on Economic Development, Public Buildings and Emergency Management. I’m handling the largest economic development project in the United States now, the Homeland Security Compound of three buildings being built on the uh, old St. Elizabeth’s hospital site in the District of Columbia along with uh, fifteen other, uh, sites here for, that are part of the stimulus .

I was, frankly, uh, uh, surprised to see that we don’t have a record, so far as I can tell, of your having given to me despite my uh, long and deep uh, work. In fact, it’s been my major work, uh, on the committee and sub-committee it’s been essentially in your sector.

I am, I’m simply candidly calling to ask for a contribution. As the senior member of the um, committee and a sub-committee chair, we have (chuckles) obligations to raise, uh funds. And, I think it must have been me who hasn’t, frankly, uh, done my homework to ask for a contribution earlier. So I’m trying to make up for it by asking for one now, when we particularly, uh, need, uh contributions, particularly those of us who have the seniority and chairmanships and are in a position to raise the funds.

I’m asking you to give to Citizens for Eleanor Holmes Norton, PO Box 70626, DC, 20024. I’ll send you a follow-up note with appreciation for having heard me out. Thanks again.


TOPICS: Breaking News; Crime/Corruption; Government; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections; US: District of Columbia; US: Maryland; US: Virginia
KEYWORDS: 2010; 2010election; abovealllaw; abovethelaw; afreakinqueen; barackpansy; congress; corruption; dc; democrats; dncrico; doj4rico; eleanorholmesnorton; election; leftists; liberalism; liberals; mensa; mentaldisorder; moron; paytoplay; politics; shakedown; socialism; typical
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1 posted on 09/15/2010 8:33:13 PM PDT by ReagansRaiders
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To: ReagansRaiders

2 posted on 09/15/2010 8:37:10 PM PDT by gipper81 (markets rule, politicians drule)
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To: ReagansRaiders

Corruption. Extortion. I love it.


3 posted on 09/15/2010 8:37:15 PM PDT by ClearCase_guy (Things will change after the revolution, but not before.)
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To: ReagansRaiders

The old Chicago shake down.


4 posted on 09/15/2010 8:38:15 PM PDT by Parley Baer
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To: ReagansRaiders

My first reaction before listening was that all politicians have to make these calls, but are generally not stupid enough to leave a message, but then I listened to the audio and it does sound like some sort of crass shakedown. Can’t imagine that this is legal.


5 posted on 09/15/2010 8:38:36 PM PDT by purplelobster
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To: ClearCase_guy

Actually, I would consider this to be a request for an illegal gratuity...


6 posted on 09/15/2010 8:38:47 PM PDT by ReagansRaiders (Sarah Palin - Bob McDonnell 2012)
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To: ReagansRaiders

I’m sure she’ll spin this somehow. It’s so blatant it’s insulting!


7 posted on 09/15/2010 8:39:08 PM PDT by USArmySpouse
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To: gipper81
 

8 posted on 09/15/2010 8:41:22 PM PDT by Vendome (Don't take life so seriously... You'll never live through it.)
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To: ReagansRaiders

Racist!!!

/sarc


9 posted on 09/15/2010 8:41:23 PM PDT by TigerClaws
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To: ReagansRaiders

Dialing for dollars. The lobbyist would not have released this tape if he or she did not think the Rats would loose out in this election.


10 posted on 09/15/2010 8:42:22 PM PDT by Oldexpat
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To: ReagansRaiders

Whaaaa?
Doncha know that NOTHING is illegal, or unethical, if Done-While-Democrat, and especially while BLACK DEMOCRAT?

Just ask anyone in the News Rooms at MSNBC, NBC, CBS, ABC, or CNN about this!!


11 posted on 09/15/2010 8:42:55 PM PDT by tcrlaf (Obama White House=Tammany Hall on the National Mall)
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To: ReagansRaiders

Teenagers selling door to door have a better technique and delivery...


12 posted on 09/15/2010 8:43:54 PM PDT by ltc8k6
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To: gipper81

Oh.....but we dare NOT to criticize or investigate her because she has more melanin. That would be racist. /s

I’m soooooooooooooo sick of this crap.


13 posted on 09/15/2010 8:44:27 PM PDT by RushIsMyTeddyBear (I don't have a 'Cousin Pookie'.)
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To: ClearCase_guy
Corruption. Extortion. I love it.

And, incredibly, Eleanor Holmes Norton doesn't even need the money to run a campaign. As the representative from D.C., she's appointed! And she has no vote!

Eleanor, ol' girl, life is tough. It's even tougher when you're stupid...

14 posted on 09/15/2010 8:45:14 PM PDT by okie01 (THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA: Ignorance on Parade)
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To: ReagansRaiders

I find it especially amusing that Norton is trolling for bucks when she is not even a full voting member of the House.

(Btw...I wonder if the 2009 DC Voting Rights Act will rear its ugly head again after Nov 2nd? Wouldn’t put it past Pelosi.)


15 posted on 09/15/2010 8:47:30 PM PDT by DemforBush (You might think that, *I* could not possibly comment.)
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To: Parley Baer

A shakedown for sure...but she obviously needs a teleprompter to reduce the ums.


16 posted on 09/15/2010 8:49:01 PM PDT by olesrus
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To: gipper81

This one one name nobody thought about (who?)

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/2587958/posts?page=1

here


17 posted on 09/15/2010 8:55:50 PM PDT by txhurl
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To: ReagansRaiders
Speaker Pelosi and her leadership team are putting a lot of pressure on Democrat members to pony up campaign contributions to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

Redistribution of wealth works in Congressional campaigns just like it does with everybody else.

18 posted on 09/15/2010 8:56:06 PM PDT by Carry_Okie (The RINOcrat Party is still in charge. There has never been a conservative American government.)
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To: ReagansRaiders
she details her role overseeing a large economic development project in the District, funded by “stimulus” funds. It would appear that either the lobbyist has an interest in this project, or the Congresswoman thinks he does,

Someone knows the answer to this, or how to find out...if there's a match, Miss Ellie is in deep doo-doo. Unless Pelosi is going to defend her and refuse to start an investigation 40 days from mid-terms?
19 posted on 09/15/2010 8:59:13 PM PDT by LostInBayport (When there are more people riding in the cart than there are pulling it, the cart stops moving...)
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To: ReagansRaiders
The real shocker- she brags about the largest economic development project in the country-the Homeland Security Headquarters.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-bloggers/2590075/posts

Best regards,

20 posted on 09/15/2010 9:01:27 PM PDT by Copernicus (California Grandmother view on Gun Control http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=7CCB40F421ED4819)
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To: ReagansRaiders

I’m handling the largest economic development project in the United States now, the Homeland Security Compound of three buildings being built on the uh, old St. Elizabeth’s hospital site in the District of Columbia along with uh, fifteen other, uh, sites here for, that are part of the stimulus.


Compound?


21 posted on 09/15/2010 9:04:06 PM PDT by txhurl
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To: ReagansRaiders

Obama made a big deal about not having lobbyists in his administration - but that doesn’t stop the ‘rats from putting the strongarm on them behind the scene.....


22 posted on 09/15/2010 9:08:50 PM PDT by Intolerant in NJ
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To: ReagansRaiders; Abundy; Albion Wilde; AlwaysFree; AnnaSASsyFR; bayliving; BFM; ...

Congresswoman shaking down lobbyist. Isn’t that what they normally do, anyhow?

S.S., D.D.

Maryland “Freak State” PING!


23 posted on 09/15/2010 9:09:21 PM PDT by Tolerance Sucks Rocks (Muslims are not the problem, the rest of the world is! /s)
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To: ReagansRaiders

Nancy, you have leak in the DC sector of the swamp.

Oh, never mind, draining the swamp applies only to the foes of Pissoli and friends. EHN, you’re good to go. Keep dialing.

My bad.


24 posted on 09/15/2010 9:09:44 PM PDT by takenoprisoner (Evils within America: Islam_Socialism_illegal immigration_Gangbangers_)
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To: ReagansRaiders

Throw her in jail tomorrow. The AG needs to arrest her tomorrow.

If they don’t they are basically, finally, admitting that they are indeed thugs.


25 posted on 09/15/2010 9:09:44 PM PDT by SpringtoLiberty (Liberty is on the march!)
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To: okie01
And, incredibly, Eleanor Holmes Norton doesn't even need the money to run a campaign. As the representative from D.C., she's appointed! And she has no vote!

That's what I thought.

But if she is a non-voting member of Congress, WHY is she the HEAD of a Committee? Especially one that decides how to spend billions of taxpayer money!

26 posted on 09/15/2010 9:10:17 PM PDT by Cowboy Bob (Liberalism and Patriotism cannot coexist.)
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To: Cowboy Bob

I think that Congress must have at least one committee or sub-committee for each member of the majority party, just so they can all have power over a segment of the “community.”


27 posted on 09/15/2010 9:19:25 PM PDT by maica (Freedom consists not in doing what we like,but in having the right to do what we ought. John Paul II)
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To: ReagansRaiders

Summation:

An idiot managed to get themselves elected to congress and left a political symbiote a voice mail which made its way into the public.

The voicemail said (and I sum up here): I don’t need your money but the Party needs it. Give it to us or you can forget all those favors we did for you and stimulus money you got.

I am not a lawyer. I don’t even play one on TV but I’m reasonably certain that’s some level of crime.

Been nice knowing her, the moron. The second we regain the House she is going to be answering some serious questions from some serious people and if she’s lucky, she’ll only get kicked out of Congress. If not, she’s going to jail.


28 posted on 09/15/2010 9:26:00 PM PDT by Personal Responsibility ("In a time of universal deciet, telling the truth is a revolutionary act" - Orwell)
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To: ReagansRaiders
Maybe I missed it, but who is the lobbyist she was talking to?
29 posted on 09/15/2010 9:30:00 PM PDT by avacado
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To: gipper81

Scum of a feather sticks together.


30 posted on 09/15/2010 9:48:39 PM PDT by olrtex
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To: ReagansRaiders
[Norton]: "I’m handling the largest economic development project in the United States now, the Homeland Security Compound of three buildings being built on the uh, old St. Elizabeth’s hospital site in the District of Columbia along with uh, fifteen other, uh, sites here for, that are part of the stimulus."

She EXPLICITLY links her power over appropriations for HOMELAND SECURITY and for the so-called "stimulus" bazillions (which as many of us have pointed out is one of the worst 'Rat slushfund cesspools in American history).

This is certainly a most unethical shakedown, an obvious "pay-to-play" kind of sleaze.... granted, far too much of US politics is greased by this sort of thing at least implicitly, but I wonder how many pols dare to make such brazen linkages between their areas of power and appropriations, the lobbyist's focus, and the *need* for financial contributions???

She certainly violated House ethics rules and probably the law ---- time to focus the bright lights on the Demagogues' culture of CORRUPTION.
31 posted on 09/15/2010 10:07:30 PM PDT by Enchante ("The great enemy of clear language is insincerity." -- George Orwell --)
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To: gipper81

Don’t worry. Erik’s got her back.


32 posted on 09/15/2010 10:30:04 PM PDT by smokingfrog (freerepublic.com - Thanks JimRob! The flags are back! - 8/17/2010.)
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To: Cowboy Bob
But if she is a non-voting member of Congress, WHY is she the HEAD of a Committee?

If I am not mistaken, House rules grant Norton a vote in committee. But she has no vote on the floor.

The Democrats recognize her seniority.

33 posted on 09/15/2010 10:42:10 PM PDT by okie01 (THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA: Ignorance on Parade)
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To: Oldexpat

“Dialing for dollars. The lobbyist would not have released this tape if he or she did not think the Rats would loose out in this election.”

That could be or they just got tired of being shaken.


34 posted on 09/15/2010 10:42:46 PM PDT by swheats (We were born for such a time as this. Let's Roll!)
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To: All
FEMALE MINORITY DEMOCRAT

The cards to be played at the opportune moment...

35 posted on 09/15/2010 11:19:13 PM PDT by BigEdLB (Now there ARE 1,000,000 regrets - but it may be too late.)
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To: swheats
The lobbyist would not have released this tape if he or she did not think the Rats would loose out in this election.”

The lobbyist was just covering his/her own butt. Whenever someone suggest an illegal activity surrounding political campaigns and/or donations you tell as many people as you know about it for fear of being dragged into some slimeball's scandal.

36 posted on 09/15/2010 11:24:17 PM PDT by ElkGroveDan (Now can we forget about that old rum-runner Joe Kennedy and his progeny of philandering drunks?)
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To: ReagansRaiders

My oh my. Another Democrat heard form. Wonder if ABCNBCCBSCNNMSNBC will run with this story tomorrow?


37 posted on 09/15/2010 11:32:26 PM PDT by BAW (Proud Tea Party Patriot.)
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To: ElkGroveDan

Whatever the circumstances I’m glad he didn’t delete it. Elenor will have a time of soul searching. Or at least I hope so.


38 posted on 09/15/2010 11:32:59 PM PDT by swheats (We were born for such a time as this. Let's Roll!)
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To: ReagansRaiders

Well DC is not really a state and she’s not really a congressman, she is like a “shadow congressman” I don’t think she even gets a vote, she’s there but not really there, a typical government sort of thing, you know what I mean? So that can be her defense, she’s not really a voting member, not a true member of congress, so how can she have any influence? This is how these people get off, on a technicality (like Bill Clinton was going to invoke something like the Solders and Sailors Act to save himself during the Lewinsky scandal). By the way, when I said she’s a congressman, I meant it (that’s a man, baby).


39 posted on 09/15/2010 11:51:07 PM PDT by decisis
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To: ReagansRaiders
"Norton, you IDIOT!!"
Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.us
40 posted on 09/16/2010 2:33:00 AM PDT by mkjessup (0bama is a traitor. And he squats to pee too.)
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To: swheats
Eleanor will have a time of soul searching.

Unlikely. Like most 'Rats, one cannot search for what was never there in the first place.
41 posted on 09/16/2010 2:34:34 AM PDT by mkjessup (0bama is a traitor. And he squats to pee too.)
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To: Enchante
"I’m handling the largest economic development project in the United States now, the Homeland Security Compound of three buildings being built on the uh, old St. Elizabeth’s hospital site in the District of Columbia"

Nobody sees the irony of a Homeland Security Compound on the grounds of a former insane asylum.

Looks like the inmates are still in charge.
42 posted on 09/16/2010 2:36:55 AM PDT by mkjessup (0bama is a traitor. And he squats to pee too.)
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To: gipper81

She’s not the sharpest knife in the drawer! Thank you Mr. Breitbart for exposing the thug tactics of members of Congress to eke funds out of constituents. If we can call a lobbyist a constituent. I find myself not sympathizing at all with the lobbyist, by the way.


43 posted on 09/16/2010 2:42:23 AM PDT by browniexyz
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To: tcrlaf
Just ask anyone in the News Rooms at MSNBC, NBC, CBS, ABC, or CNN about this!!

Or the media spokesperson for the CBC. While he/she is defending Rangel maybe Norton will come up.

44 posted on 09/16/2010 3:09:44 AM PDT by TexasRedeye (Eschew obfuscation)
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To: gipper81
She is the "shadow" delegate to the House of Representatives from Washington, D.C. She has no vote.

She is also one of the worst slave masters on the D.C. plantation. She came out against vouchers for school children and helped cancel the program.

D.C. consistently polls at the bottom of school districts nation wide even though the per capita expense for kids is over$9,000 per year.

45 posted on 09/16/2010 3:10:32 AM PDT by Jimmy Valentine (DemocRATS - when they speak, they lie; when they are silent, they are stealing the American Dream)
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To: ReagansRaiders

crooks ‘r us.


46 posted on 09/16/2010 4:01:02 AM PDT by The Wizard (Madam President is my President now and in the future)
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To: gipper81

The Dem leadership in this country is an embarrassment.


47 posted on 09/16/2010 4:56:53 AM PDT by Chickensoup (There is a group of people who suck off the productive. They make rules then find infractions.)
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To: purplelobster

According to the article, it is a misdemenor.

Personally I think that this is another way to betray the country and its people and I think of it as a capital offense.


48 posted on 09/16/2010 4:58:20 AM PDT by Chickensoup (There is a group of people who suck off the productive. They make rules then find infractions.)
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To: DemforBush

I find it especially amusing that Norton is trolling for bucks when she is not even a full voting member of the House.

Why isnt she a full voting memeber?


49 posted on 09/16/2010 4:59:41 AM PDT by Chickensoup (There is a group of people who suck off the productive. They make rules then find infractions.)
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To: DemforBush

I just realized she is a DC rep


50 posted on 09/16/2010 5:00:58 AM PDT by Chickensoup (There is a group of people who suck off the productive. They make rules then find infractions.)
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