The Democratic Congress hasn't lived up to its promises of acting morally
The Democratic Congress hasn't lived up to its promises of acting morally, says David Morris
By: David Morris
According to a Gallup poll conducted last week, the Democrat-led Congress received an all-time low approval rating of 14 percent.
Of course, the reasons for such an abysmal rating are probably quite obvious for those with eyes to see and ears to hear. Upon swearing in as the first female House leader in the history of America, Nancy Pelosi made the promise that she would preside over the "most ethical congress ever."
Calling the Democratic-led congress ethical is like calling a bordello the seat of chastity and virtue. After all, we're talking about the party of Ted Kennedy (one word: Chappaquiddick), Robert "KKK" Byrd, John Murtha, Hillary Clinton and William Jefferson. The aforementioned Democrats and ethics are like east and west, and as Rudyard Kipling so famously observed, never the twain shall meet.
For example, over the Easter holiday in April, Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) took nine other Democratic congressmen and two Republicans on a tour of the Caribbean, Honduras, Mexico and the U.S. Virgin Islands - at taxpayer expense, using military aircraft for transportation. They practiced good old-fashioned fiscal conservatism, opting to stay at the Caneel Bay resort at a paltry $1,100 per night. Thompson claimed to have paid a special "government rate," but Caneel Bay said they don't offer a "government rate." In another trip to the Caribbean, Rep. Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.), his wife and four other Democrats took side trips to Grenada and Trinidad, again at taxpayer expense.
And then we have Rep. John Murtha (D-Pa.) who, in early May, violated House ethics rules by essentially throwing a temper tantrum. To summarize the spat, Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) had the gall to question $23 million of pork added to an intelligence bill by Murtha, to which Murtha replied, "I hope you don't have any earmarks in the defense appropriations bills, because they are gone, and you will not get any earmarks now and forever." If you aren't a member of the House, or are John Murtha and therefore unfamiliar with the rules, members are not allowed to condition consideration of earmarks on any vote cast.
When reprimanded by Rogers for his behavior, Murtha basically replied, "That's how I roll."
This is no solitary outburst, following on the heels of a shouting match Murtha initiated with Rep. Todd Tiahrt (R-Kan.) for voting to shut down a program in Murtha's district. And when it came time for a vote to censure Murtha for his behavior? The votes were cast along party lines, with Democrats voting against censuring one of their most powerful members.
Then there is Rep. William Jefferson (D-La.), who you may remember as the accused in the infamous money-in-the-freezer bribery incident ($90,000 to be exact). After much hullaballoo claiming that Jefferson's prosecution constituted a witch hunt (prosecuting Democrats is always a witch hunt), eight months later, and only one month after Pelosi's promise to "drain the swamp that is Washington," Democrats made the ethical decision to appoint Jefferson to the Homeland Security Committee. Earlier this month, Jefferson was indicted by a federal grand jury on 16 charges, including bribery, racketeering, obstruction of justice and money laundering, in what prosecutors described as a case of "greed, power and arrogance."
And so what we have is the same ol' same ol', with an unending litany of fiscal irresponsibility and ethical abuse, except this time following Pelosi's exceptionally na've promises of reform. Unfortunately for Pelosi, her mother must not have given her the same advice that mine gave me about never making promises that I can't keep. The most ethical congress ever? Rep. Pelosi, that yellow dog don't hunt.