Monday, December 17, 2012

Aaron Schock Got Caught


Aaron plans to burn this outfit as well

Aaron Schock, is a star inside the Republican House Caucus. He gained notice for flaunting his six-pack abs on the cover of Men's Health magazine and posing for a fashion shoot in GQ and they gave him a spot on House Ways and Means, a primo committee that makes campaign fundraising easy and even put him on Kevin McCarthy's Whip Team as a Deputy Whip. He reminds many of his colleagues of the once-popular and similarly well-dressed Mark Foley, who was also closeted-back-home but fairly "out" in DC.

The dashing young closet case was just reelected, albeit against a sacrificial lamb opponent and in a district gerrymandered as a Republican dumping ground by a Democratic state legislature interested in making IL-12, IL-13 and IL-17 bluer. Schock raised $3,174,058, spent $2,047,262 (and still has $2,169,449 on hand) while his opponent, Steve Waterworth, raised less than $5,000. Schock won with 243,295 votes (74%) against Waterworth's 84,544. So now the 2-term 31 year old stud-muffin is talking about running for governor in 2014.

Keep in mind that Schock is a lockstep hack who never differs from the very right-wing and very extreme House leadership, a leadership that primarily caters to a base of very ignorant Southern white racists who get all their information from Hate Talk Radio and Fox News. His party opposed economic stimulus, health-care reform, addressing climate change, reproductive rights, same-sex marriage, campaign finance limits, and regulating Big Banks, and advocated extending tax breaks for the rich, privatizing Amtrak and Social Security, and downsizing the Post Office and Medicare/Medicaid. Young Aaron was onboard with every backward, crazy Republican vote. But that's not the kind of platform one runs on for governor, well in Mississippi and Idaho it is, but not in Illinois. The state party chairman, Pat Brady, mentioned recently that “We’ve got to get over this caricature of us as being a bunch of angry people standing in the way of everything.”

OK, Schock is down with that. He keeps talking about going the more "centrist" and mainstream route, even while voting exactly the same as a pack of crazy fanatics. “You’re going to have candidates who are more centrist," explained Schock to a reporter from AP, "and know how to communicate and appeal to moderates.” Unless he thinks flaunting and posing is appealing to moderates, he certainly isn't doing anything about that beyond talking about it. Running way behind a bunch of other Republicans-- State Treasurer Dan Rutherford and state senators Bill Brady and Kirk Dillard-- Schock's voting record is pretty abysmal, regardless of how many times he says "moderate" or "mainstream." He was endorsed by the John Birch Society and boasts a 100% rating by the Christian Coalition and by the National Right to Life Committee. He wound up with a zero rating from the Children’s Health Fund, the National Farmers Union, Planned Parenthood and failing grades from the Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law, the AFL-CIO labor federation, the Alliance for Retired Americans, the American Library Association, the American Nurses Association, the Arab American Institute, Food Policy Action, the NAACP, and the National Education Association.

Perhaps nothing illustrates Schock's life of twisted duality-- a common occurrence for politicians hiding in the closet-- than his problem with Latino voters. The National Latino Congreso/William C. Velasquez Institute gave a 0 to Schock, who voted against the DREAM Act immigration reform yet last month told the Chicago Sun-Times, “The group that we really have to zero in on, I believe, is the Latino community, a group that really should be voting for Republicans to the degree we take a leadership role on the issue of immigration.” Twisted. And speaking of zeroes, have a look at young Adam's voting record on kissing up to corporations, on fair taxation issues, on health care, on issues involving housing and on how this closet case treats his gay brothers and sisters in the LGBT community. Appealing to moderates? Also corrupt.

In a Friday evening news dump, the House Ethics Committee announced it has Schock under investigation. It also announced, at the same time, it's investigating corrupt New Dem Bill Owens (D-NY), presaging another "bipartisan" deal that eventually leads to both crooks being let off the hook in a partisan trade-off, just the way the Ethics Committee "cleared" bribe takers Joe Crowley (D-NY) and Tom Price (R-GA).
News that Rep. Aaron Schock is under investigation by the House Ethics Committee casts a cloud of suspicion over a lawmaker who entered Congress in 2009 as its youngest member and has since built a national profile.

...[H]e is under scrutiny over possible violation of House rules, but the ethics panel declined Friday to make public what it is investigating.

Steve Dutton, Schock's spokesman, told the Tribune on Friday that the ethics review involved super PAC money.

That appeared to be a reference to reports that Schock solicited a $25,000 contribution from Majority Leader Eric Cantor's political action committee to help fund a super PAC that successfully backed Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill., in a March primary against another Republican incumbent, Don Manzullo.

...The Federal Election Commission is examining that conduct because federal officeholders may seek a maximum donation of $5,000 for a super PAC.

Ethics officials would not discuss whether the super PAC was a focus of the investigation — or the sole focus. Schock also has come under scrutiny over his spending of campaign money for meals and hotels. Dutton said, however, the probe had nothing to do with Schock's campaign spending, including a hotel bill from Greece that was reported this year by a watchdog group.

After Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington detailed Schock's use of campaign dollars, he reimbursed his war chest for a $1,136 stay in 2009 at the Hotel Grande Bretagne, a luxury hotel in Athens. Federal election law does not allow the use of campaign money for vacations.

At the time of CREW's disclosure, Schock aide Steven Shearer called payment for the Greek hotel a "mistake." He said a credit card receipt for the hotel had erroneously been "included with a stack of other legitimate campaign expenses." ...Schock's office, in an email to the Tribune, declared: "We remain confident that this matter will be resolved positively."
The Ethics Committee is the only House committee for which Boehner hasn't named a chair, a move that may help cover-up Schock's behavior-- the committee has 45 days from Friday to formalize the investigation-- and keep his reputation intact for a gubernatorial run. Schock has spent around $100,000 on high-priced DC lawyers trying to get him off the hook. Meanwhile the rumors-- they're only "rumors" for straight people; the LGBT community knows he's gay-- rage on. Take the Young Turks, for example:

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At 7:12 AM, Anonymous BrianG said...

Here is some stuff to put in your Schock corruption file.


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