the *real* watergate

Are Obama And All Democrats Going To Jail Because Joe Sestak Got Floated A Job Offer?

Never trust the sleestakRichest member of Congress and vicious fraud-clown Rep. Darrell Issa has been going on for months about how he will investigate claims of the White House offering Joe Sestak an administration job — Secretary of the Navy? — to not run against Arlen Specter in this year’s primary. (Sestak very wisely turned this down, and now he has a 50-50 shot of becoming a powerful back-bench junior member of the world’s most dysfunctional and useless governing body!) But the thing that doesn’t make sense about this is, let’s see, who the hell cares at all? Besides the Washington Post editorial board?

Since Obama would be the first politician to ever participate in the sinful art of “talking things over,” TPM called some lawyers about its legality.

That may be fair as far as it goes — the White House certainly hasn’t been falling all over itself to be up front about what happened. But the experts seem to agree that there’s no legal wrongdoing — and very little scandal here.

“People horse trade politically all the time,” Stan Brand, a prominent Washington criminal defense lawyer told TPMmuckraker. “So I don’t put much stock in this, and I don’t think its gonna go anywhere.”

Related video

Even those who used to prosecute public corruption cases agree. “Talk about criminalizing the political process!” said Peter Zeidenberg, a former federal prosecutor with the Justice Department’s Public Integrity unit. “It would be horrible precedent if what really truly is political horsetrading were viewed in the criminal context of: is this a corrupt bribe?”

And Melanie Sloan, a former federal prosecutor who as the head of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington isn’t known for going on easy public corruption, concurred. “There is no bribery case here,” she said. “No statute has ever been used to prosecute anybody for bribery in circumstances like this.”

Sloan added that Issa’s move was more about politics. “It’s not at all about whether there was actual criminal wrongdoing,” she said. “It’s about how to go after Sestak.”

Indeed, it will hurt Sestak’s Senate campaign to know that… he turned down other options before deciding to run for Senate? IS THERE ANYTHING HE WON’T *NOT* DO FOR THE OBAMA CHICAGO THUGS?

Does anyone remember the late-night/early-morning shenanigans during the most insane vote in House history, that of Medicare part D in 2005? The Republican leadership was almost literally cutting checks to members on the House floor. It was just Capitalism.

[TPM]

Related

About the author

Jim Newell is Wonkette's beloved Capitol Hill Typing Demon. He joined Wonkette.com in 2007, left for some other dumb job in 2010, and proudly returned in 2012 as our "Senior Editor at Large." He lives in Washington and also writes for things such as The Guardian, the Manchester paper of liberals.

View all articles by Jim Newell

Hola wonkerados.

To improve site performance, we did a thing. It could be up to three minutes before your comment appears. DON'T KEEP RETRYING, OKAY?

Also, if you are a new commenter, your comment may never appear. This is probably because we hate you.

57 comments

  1. V572625694

    These people are monsters. The next thing you know they’ll give federal grants for projects in Democratic districts. This is worse than ACORN, which Panamanian strongman Juan McCain said was “destroying the very fabric of our democracy.”

  2. mumblyjoe

    the experts seem to agree that there’s no legal wrongdoing — and very little scandal here.

    …but lets just keep on talking about it anyway, because, I mean, why not?

    I’m reminded of Gilberg Godfried roasting Bob Sagat all of a sudden, for some reason.

  3. JMP

    That’s two counts of the Post treating ordinary politics by Democrats as scandals in one day. Hm, there’s still three and a half hours left, maybe they can go for the hat trick.

  4. weejee

    I hear the real job offer was Postmaster in Forks, Washington and they were gonna sic the vampires on the Sleazestak. It’s just down da road from Lascauxcaveman.

  5. Aflac Shrugged

    Okay, so just it’s clear for everybody: (1) being offered a job for which you’re eminently qualified, by the White House, is corruption; (2) being offered millions in donations to your campaign, by private companies with a stake in your vote, is the First Amendment at work.

  6. Hooray For Anything

    The Washington Post’s lack of self-awareness is kind of charming sometimes.

  7. Tommmcatt

    I’m glad this Sestak dude won, because the old pictures from Land of the Lost are awesome.

  8. dijetlo

    What do you want them to do? Talk about their policy plans? Their goals for improving the lives of all Americans?
    They don’t have anything like that, so this non-issue is going to have to be the basis of their platform in 2010.

  9. JavaJack

    Who said it first:

    “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”

    Joseph Goebbels
    Now replace “State” with “Republican Party”. Carry on.

  10. SUPER Chundy

    Why even bother having hearings, let’s just kick Obama out and put Pelosi in. Wait, that will drive the Tea Baggers nuts!

  11. Trot Nixons Hat

    So they offered him a job, and then probably asked “Wait, if we give you this, are you just going to try and run for the Senate anyway? Because if we give you this, we’d like you, to, you know, do it for more than a few months.”

  12. Neilist

    [re=585210]JavaJack[/re]: Interesting that you use that quote. The “German Propaganda Archive (http://www.bytwerk.com/gpa/falsenaziquotations.htm) has this to say about it:

    There are several hundred pages in German that cite the statement, but none give a source, and one site (perhaps the earliest) notes that is “retranslated from English.”

    Goebbels wouldn’t have said that in public. He always maintained that propaganda had to be truthful. That doesn’t mean he didn’t lie, but it would be a pretty poor propagandist who publicly proclaimed that he was going to lie. I know of no evidence that he actually said it. I haven’t read everything Goebbels wrote, but I have been through a lot of it.

    Goebbels actually accused others of using the technique. In a 1941 article titled “Churchill’s Lie Factory,” he wrote:

    “One should not as a rule reveal one’s secrets, since one does not know if and when one may need them again. The essential English leadership secret does not depend on particular intelligence. Rather, it depends on a remarkably stupid thick-headedness. The English follow the principle that when one lies, one should lie big, and stick to it. They keep up their lies, even at the risk of looking ridiculous.”

    He accuses the English of the “big lie,” and suggests that, were he to use such a technique, he would not publicly announce it.

    The quotation usually seems to be used by those on the political left, who find it helpful in to associating those they don’t like with the Nazis.

    It is related to the next quotation, which is usually quoted accurately, but taken out of context.

    So I guess the issue becomes: Why do you HATE the handicapped, e.g., people with club feet?

  13. smitallica

    The way the GOP tries to make Obama seem as bad as one of them is so desperate and inept, it’s actually kind of adorable. Kinda like watching a turtle fuck a shoe.

  14. Johnny Zhivago

    [re=585223]Neilist[/re]: Churchill was a rotten painter too!!! Hitler could paint an entire apartment in one afternoon, two coats!

  15. Johnny Zhivago

    [re=585223]Neilist[/re]:
    “but it would be a pretty poor propagandist who publicly proclaimed that he was going to lie”

    Or a Republican

  16. jetjaguar

    If you bastards tune into the BP feed right now, you can watch them fail LIVE (they’re actually trying to do something right now, the robot with the cam is going all over the place): http://tinyurl.com/bpoops . And I swear I just saw Alvin.

  17. JavaJack

    [re=585223]Neilist[/re]: How can you not belive everything you read on the internet. Its all true. It said it was true. You have taken my favorite quote from me. arrg.
    Hitler is speaking of the Jews in this quote, but I think still attributeable to the talking heads of the right. My point is that it seems to be the policy of the right to keep throwing shit on the wall to see what sticks. The left cannot frame an argument to save its political life.

    “All this was inspired by the principle–which is quite true within itself–that in the big lie there is always a certain force of credibility; because the broad masses of a nation are always more easily corrupted in the deeper strata of their emotional nature than consciously or voluntarily; and thus in the primitive simplicity of their minds they more readily fall victims to the big lie than the small lie, since they themselves often tell small lies in little matters but would be ashamed to resort to large-scale falsehoods. It would never come into their heads to fabricate colossal untruths, and they would not believe that others could have the impudence to distort the truth so infamously. Even though the facts which prove this to be so may be brought clearly to their minds, they will still doubt and waver and will continue to think that there may be some other explanation. For the grossly impudent lie always leaves traces behind it, even after it has been nailed down, a fact which is known to all expert liars in this world and to all who conspire together in the art of lying.”

    —Adolf Hitler , Mein Kampf, vol. I, ch. X[1]

  18. jagorev

    “world’s most dysfunctional and useless governing body”?

    Is Sestak running for the NY State Senate or Assembly?

    Because we New Yorkers claim exclusive right to that title. Back off, Jim.

  19. mumblyjoe

    [re=585241]jagorev[/re]: Thank you sir. Until the US senate can live up to the dysfunction trifectae embodied in each of Pedro Espada and Hiram Montserrate (one has a charity that’s a massive fraud and has never set foot in his own district, the other got kicked out after cutting his live-in girlfriend in the face with a beer bottle and dragging her out the door by her hair, and loves L. Ron Hubbard. Both tried to throw the state Senate to the Republican minority to interfere with their respective ethics investigations, and succeeded, for months and months)- until they can live up to that level of dysfunction and uselessness, they seriously just cannot hang.

    What’s the most corrupt the US Senate has? Vitter? Ensign? They have nothing on us. Who’s the most dickish? Droopy Dog McMumblepants? Wario? At least those assholes haven’t tried to unseat Harry Reid yet. Washington really needs to step up its game, if they think they can hang with how we do.

  20. chascates

    You may have wondered why I delayed this attack for so long. I wanted Santa Ana to be positive we were running for the United States and then I wanted the Mexican army in a position from which it could not retreat. That’s where it is right now. The Bay of San Jacinto is at their backs. All right, are there any questions, gentlemen? Good luck – and remember the Alamo!
    Gen. Jim Newell

  21. bitchincamaro

    When there are floaters involved, the shit usually hits the fan.

    Er, something like that.

    The Newell bail-out still has me flummoxed.

    NO MORE BAIL-OUTS!1!11

  22. Red Zeppelin

    Perhaps they could find a rent boy at the bottom (he, he) of all this. No, sorry, forgot, not a Republican scandal.

  23. predilectrix

    Thank Christ it was all a bad dream and our ginger Jimmy is still with us.

    You naughty boy. Don’t ever pretend you’re leaving us again.

  24. bitchincamaro

    [re=585210]JavaJack[/re]: Would have guessed Marshall McLuhan, but then I would have had to look up the spelling and you know how I hate that…

  25. obfuscator

    [re=585262]jim newell[/re]: yeah, that was the floor vote that got extended beyond the 15 minute time limit by about… 3 hours. fucking hastert and delay.

  26. One Flew Over the Wingnut

    [re=585200]Aflac Shrugged[/re]: Ah Aflac it’s even more shameless than that. See, private companies don’t just pay to influence, they pay with the knowledge YOU WILL vote how they want. I wrote a position paper for my liberal arts U. making the claim that private funded elections are essentially the wellspring of all governmental corruption. I took a hypothetical position on the asshole SCOTUS “money is speech” declaration with the (not real) example of mobster “Sonny” Gambino paying a criminal judge about to hear his case in order to get special consideration. Then paying the jury members each to vote their personal interests and the clerk to make sure they obey and the court stenographer to not record any damning evidence presented. Then lastly, to make sure his special interest is represented in the case, paying off the assistant D.A. to bury the most damning evidence. These dumbass wingnuts of course would howl like mad Randian wolves about something like this until you then reveal that the hypothetical case describes the “advocacy” of Conoco Phillips. Then, suddenly it becomes “democracy” and totally okay, if their little make-believe worlds can even process the massive bribery er…fundraising these companies embark on to make sure everything is in their favor.

    I wonder if this wingnut SCOTUS will go ahead and grant a writ for the corruption test of West Virginia and good citizen Massey Energy where they essentially ran a bought DA. to get a fair ruling and decide if they were just using their “first amendment” rights for special advocacy. The proverbial lady democracy dies a little each day with wingnuts being allowed anywhere near power.

  27. One Flew Over the Wingnut

    oops…my bad, Massey bought a state supreme court judge, they were his only fundraiser.

  28. sati demise

    [re=585200]Aflac Shrugged[/re]: Glad you cleared that up!
    [re=585280]One Flew Over the Wingnut[/re]:
    I have a feeling there will be other courts in high places for Massey.
    Might not make any difference, but who knows?

  29. Palemoon

    (Sestak very wisely turned this down, and now he has a 50-50 shot of becoming a powerful back-bench junior member of the world’s most dysfunctional and useless governing body!)

    Best… Post… EVER!!!

  30. Radiotherapy

    [re=585272]obfuscator[/re]: And what is the delay with Delay going to prison….I mean for that dance routine that was truly criminal. (I am damaged goods just for catching a glimpse of that morbid obscenity.)

  31. zhubajie

    [re=585208]dijetlo[/re]: Their “goals for improving the lives of all Americans” probably include things like bringing debt slavery.

  32. Lascauxcaveman

    [re=585223]Neilist[/re]: I haven’t read everything Goebbels wrote, but I have been through a lot of it.
    _____

    This doesn’t surprise me in the least.

    [re=585197]weejee[/re]: I hear the real job offer (for Sestak) was Postmaster in Forks, Washington and they were gonna sic the vampires on the Sleazestak. It’s just down da road from Lascauxcaveman.

    Funny you should mention that old thing, I had a group of six TwiLighters check in to my hotel today (2 Team Jacob, 2 Team Edward, 2 Indifferent – just the sort of tolerant incohesion I’d expect from a group of socialist Massachustters, or Massachusions or whatever. The seemed entirely too nice to be “Massholes.”)

    I found myself apologizing for the fact that it was rather warm and sunny when they arrived, but pointed out that the weather report was for a good cold rain tomorrow, so they brightened up considerably after that.

  33. obfuscator

    CONGRESS is INVESTIGATING something? DO TELL!!!!!

    “DARRELL ISSA INVETIGATES”

    /issa can eat a 2 oz. bag of herpes-infested rat penises.

  34. obfuscator

    [re=585308]Lascauxcaveman[/re]: sunny with a chance of gothy angst and faux mormon purtianism.

  35. Radiotherapy

    You know who else was Secretary of the Navy?

    Beck is gonna burst an aneurysm on this one.

  36. Lionel Hutz Esq.

    Can’t Obama just get a blow job so we can finally impeach him and get this over with?

  37. Bearbloke

    [re=585325]Lionel Hutz Esq.[/re]: Obama could spare you the drama of an Impeachment if he would follow the lead of Aussie Pol (and notorious Wilford Brimley impersonator) David Campbell, who was pressured into a hurried resignation last week after being taped whilst leaving posh ghey buttseks-atorium Ken’s at Kensington in his govt car, perhaps on his way home to his cancer-stricken wife of 33 years…

    I think it was his prescient fear that his anonymous-yet-beloved ‘sexting’-pal “Jim Newell” might leave Wonkette that pushed Campbell over the edge…

  38. Lionel Hutz Esq.

    It is a shame that Mr. Campbell wasn’t a God fearing Republican, as he would have been raised into a leadership position.

  39. cat48

    THE TIMELINE IS ILLOGICAL! DOES NOT COMPUTE……

    From Dave Weigel blog, WashPost
    On March 27, 2009, the administration nominated Ray Mabus as secretary of the Navy. It wasn’t until April 28 that Specter became a Democrat, and by Sestak’s own recollection, he was literally being courted to run the day that news broke. On May 18, the Senate confirmed Mabus. And on May 29, Sestak entered the Senate race.

  40. Bearbloke

    [re=585330]Lionel Hutz Esq.[/re]: You mean like Mr Ms ‘Donna’ Milo, Tranny Teabagger candidate running in this August’s Flaw-i-duh ReThugLicant Primary? It seems he she is taking the ghey-marriage-hating path to VICTORY!!!!!1!!111!

    Perhaps this all of this season’s contests between Demoncraps and ReThuglicants should feature this as a campaign poster…

  41. Limeylizzie

    [re=585325]Lionel Hutz Esq.[/re]: I would volunteer for that mission, but I don’t want Hopey impeached..I am on the horns of a dilemma.

  42. Limeylizzie

    [re=585328]Bearbloke[/re]: Gracious that is an ugly, puffy-faced and bloated visage, he must have to pay people to bugger him.

  43. Geogre

    Dick Morris cares. Dick Morris cares a lot. Several of his continents shifted, and three of his faces slid into a rictus of “sad” when he was on Fox to denounce and demand “impeachment” for the President for the now proven offering of a job to the Grand Sleestak.

    As for the Medicare Part D vote, those people just had to understand the genius of it. As they were unaccustomed to this thing called “the future,” they couldn’t understand that it would soon, like the HMO, result in more misery for olds than before and more profits for their friends. Billy Tauzin, who needs the curse of Ernulphus read at him, understood.

    (If you need a curse, here is a version of Ernulphus’s):
    http://books.google.com/books?id=izPo3KwVucIC&pg=PA121&lpg=PA121&dq=%22May+he+be+damned+wherever+he+be,%E2%80%94whether+in+the+house+or+in+the+stables,&source=web&ots=F0zvcc57dg&sig=S4IT6aafWuywW7v235t4mTcJaYg&hl=en&sa=X&oi=book_result&resnum=4&ct=result#v=onepage&q&f=false

  44. Way Cool Larry

    [re=585223]Neilist[/re]: interestingly, I’ve seen that quote attributed to Hitler from “Mein Kampf”. But it wouldn’t surprise me if it was actually Churchill or some anonymous Brit who came up with it, since they controlled the Nazis anyway.

  45. Way Cool Larry

    [re=585238]JavaJack[/re]: whoops, missed that. I even searched the page for “mein” but it didn’t pick up your post…

  46. BlueStateLiberal

    Our fine media at work–but as for reports that the oil industry was illegally gifting, sexing and coking the very federal regulators who were supposed to regulate them–no biggie! As Wolf Blitzer noted, “Perhaps it was a little too cozy.” So today, graft = a little too cozy.

  47. doxastic

    Maybe Issa thinks if he complains enough, someone will actually do the investigating for him. He’s too busy taking actual bribes.

  48. Baby who ate the Dingo

    “My president offered Joe Sestak a job, and all I got was this lousy t-shirt.” “But atleast it’s wet, see-through, and will get me elected or a stripper’s pole.”

    S. Palin

  49. Long Form Def Certificate

    Obie’s just slick from all that oil he personally spilled in the Gulf.

  50. GOPCrusher

    [re=585223]Neilist[/re]: Maybe you prefer Gustave Gilbert’s interview of Hermann Goering during the Nuremburg Trials.

    We got around to the subject of war again and I said that, contrary to his attitude, I did not think that the common people are very thankful for leaders who bring them war and destruction.

    “Why, of course, the people don’t want war,” Goering shrugged. “Why would some poor slob on a farm want to risk his life in a war when the best that he can get out of it is to come back to his farm in one piece. Naturally, the common people don’t want war; neither in Russia nor in England nor in America, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy or a fascist dictatorship or a Parliament or a Communist dictatorship.”

    “There is one difference,” I pointed out. “In a democracy the people have some say in the matter through their elected representatives, and in the United States only Congress can declare wars.”

    “Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country.”

Comments are closed.