NBC AIRS A SMOKING GUN IN JERRY LEWIS BRIBERY CASE
Although 37,027 utterly brain dead Republicans in California's High Desert voted for him in the GOP primary (where he was, as usual, unchallenged), prison looms large in the immediate future of House Appropriations Committee Jerry Lewis. Today NBC News reported the details of how Lewis shook down his victims and how he used his official position to enrich himself and his cronies (and his family).
The CEO of a defunct software company, Audre, Inc., has been explaining to federa investigators how Lewis allowed him to actually write his own earmarks for $14 million in Pentagon contracts in return fo bribes and kickbacks. Lewis wanted stock in the company sent to his bagman, Bill Lowery, using a Canadian front. A trascript:
Tom Casey: I just thought, in my opinion, it pressed the boundaries of what was ethical.
Lisa Myers: You were allowed to write language for an appropriations bill yourself?
Casey: Yes, I did. That was Congressman Lewis' suggestion.
Casey: Congressman Lewis asked me to set up stock options for Bill Lowery in our company.
Myers: Did you view it [Lowery and the Canadian blind] as an effort to hide what was really going on?
Casey: It was intended to conceal his participation, yes.
Like his pal and fellow bribe-taker, Randy "Duke" Cunningham, used to do when he was first caught, Lewis is still denying "everything" and playing the aggrieved victim (a Republican specialty). "I am astonished," he say, "that a top news organization would broadcast such unsubstantiated accusations."
SATURDAY UPDATE: PLEASE JUST PUT HIM IN PRISON ALREADY SO WE CAN MOVE ON
Look, I don't want to write about this bucket of living slime everyday. It makes me want to jump in the shower every time I have to read about him, let alone write about him. Even at the beginning of my Duke Cunningham coverage, I knew that once the manhole on the Lewis cesspool was blown open, it would cover the whole system with the worst detritus of human corruption ever witnessed.
Today's L.A. TIMES is reporting on one of Lewis' top aides, Jeffrey Shockley, taking a hefty $2 million dollar kickback from Lewis' bagman Bill Lowery. If nothing else it reinforces the lengths Lewis went to cover his tracks as he did everything possible to drain the system of every last dime his grasping paws could get a hold of.
Lewis' daily denials about knowing anything about an investigation or any wrong-doing will probably soon turn into denials that he has been cuffed and frog-walked and fingerprinted yet. But the inevitability of Jerry Lewis spending at least a decade in a federal prison-- unless Bush pardons all the principals in the Republican Culture of Corruption as he rides off into the sunset-- becomes clearer and clearer by the day.
Lowery's firm seems to have existed for exactly two reasons: "helping clients get federal spending directives known as earmarks approved by Lewis' committee" and funneling kickbacks to Lewis in return for those earmarks.
SUNDAY UPDATE: LEWIS SCANDAL STARTING TO GET TRACTION WHERE IT COUNTS-- AT HOME
Like I've said before, as much as the L.A. TIMES and NY TIMES and WASHINGTON POST and SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE (not to mention a gaggle of bloggers want to expose Jerry Lewis' outrageous criminal activities in Washington, none of it matters as long as his constituents go on their somnolent ways believing he has nothing in mind but "bringing home the bacon" (for them). And this is exactly what they think. The facade of Lewis invincibility is beginning to crack though. Today's ONTARIO DAILY BULLETIN has a thorough and damning story by George Watson that connects the dots for whomever in CA-41 is willing to open their eyes.
(Hat tip to RJB at WORDS HAVE POWER)