Thursday, January 18, 2007

The Difference Between Republicans and Democrats

I had coffee with a prominent local blogger last weekend and part of the conversation revolved around a comment I had heard months earlier on the radio from a liberal blogger of note who was talking about the Mike McGavick drunk driving story. When the blogger was asked why he did not take Washington State Supreme Court Justice Bobby Bridge to task for her drunk driving episode, the blogger replied by saying she was one of ours and we did not attack our own, that is the other sides job. The struck me as odd on two points, 1) that the blogger would publicly admit Justice Bridge is a partisan and 2) that liberals do not hold liberals to a higher standard, or any standard for that matter.

So I decided to think of all the examples of wrong doing by known partisans and note the offense, how it was handled by the person and/or the party any punishment, etc. Because it sure seemed to me that Republicans hold their own to a much higher standard than Democrats. No order to the list, just as they came to me. Sadly, the list is much longer than I first expected so this will be a bit on the quick and dirty side. All information from Wikipedia, so you know it has to be accurate.


Tom Delay
Former House Majority leader known for his tough style that earned him the nickname “The Hammer”.

On September 28, 2005, a Travis County grand jury operating under Travis County District Attorney Ronnie Earle indicted DeLay for conspiring to violate Texas state election law stemming from issues dealing with his involvement in TRMPAC. Texas law prohibits corporate contributions in state legislative races. The indictment charged that TRMPAC accepted corporate contributions, laundered the money through the Republican National Committee, and directed it to favored Republican candidates in Texas.

On April 3, 2006, DeLay announced that he would not run for re-election. He explained that polls showed him beating Democratic opponent Nick Lampson in the general election, but that the possibility of losing the election was too risky.

Case not resolved as of yet.

Newt Gingrinch
Speaker of the United States House of Representatives from 1995 to 1999.

Gingrich was accused of hypocrisy and unethical behavior when he accepted a $4.5 million advance as part of a book deal, in light of his previous role in the investigation of Jim Wright. Including charges related to the book deal, Democrats filed 84 ethics charges against Speaker Gingrich during his term, including claiming tax-exempt status for a college course run for political purposes and using the GOPAC political action committee as a slush fund; see Joseph Gaylord. All charges were eventually dropped following an investigation by the Republican-led House Ethics Committee. However, Gingrich admitted to unintentionally giving inaccurate information to the House Ethics Committee during the course of the investigation.
On January 10, 1997, the New York Times printed a story that revealed Gingrich, in collusion with other House Republicans, planned to abrogate his agreement by misrepresenting the ethics violations he committed.

Following the accusations, (of the book deal) Gingrich returned the advance. All charges were eventually dropped following an investigation by the Republican-led House Ethics Committee. However, Gingrich admitted to unintentionally giving inaccurate information to the House Ethics Committee during the course of the investigation. The committee did not indict him on charges of intentional perjury. The matter was settled when he agreed to reimburse the Committee $300,000 for the cost of prolonging the investigation. The payment was described as a "cost assessment" and not a fine by the Committee.

The Republicans expected big gains from the 1998 Congressional elections. In fact, Gingrich predicted a 30-seat Republican pickup. Instead, the Republicans lost five seats, the poorest results in 64 years for any party not in control of the White House in a midterm election. Having led the GOP to focus on the impeachment project as a principal strategy, Gingrich took most of the blame for the defeat. Facing a rebellion in the Republican caucus, he announced on November 6 that he would not only stand down as Speaker, but would leave the House as well.

Bob Livingston
Chosen as Newt Gingrich's successor as Speaker of the United States House of Representatives late in 1998.

Although the Republicans claimed Clinton deserved impeachment because he lied about his sexual indiscretions, many Democrats felt the indiscretions themselves were the main issue. In response, Hustler Magazine publisher Larry Flynt placed an article in his magazine offering up to $1,000,000 for information on sexual indiscretions by Republican officials. Flynt received evidence that Livingston had strayed multiple times outside of his marriage, and he was preparing to publish this information. Livingston got word that the article was pending. During debate over the impeachment resolution on December 19, 1998, Livingston surprised everyone by stepping down as Speaker-elect and announced he would resign from the House in May 1999.

Mark Foley
Republican member of the United States House of Representatives from 1995 until 2006.

On September 28, 2006, ABC News Chief Investigative Correspondent Brian Ross reported that in 2005 Foley had sent email messages from his personal AOL account to a former Congressional page, asking the page to send a photo of himself to Foley, among other things. Foley’s office confirmed that Foley had sent the messages but said it has a practice of asking for photos of individuals who may ask for recommendations and that the page had requested a recommendation.

The original news report prompted another page to come forward and on September 29, 2006, ABC News reported that it had seen excerpts of sexually explicit instant messages allegedly sent by Foley. The instant messages made repeated references to sexual organs and acts. After being approached by reporters with this new information, Foley submitted a letter of resignation from Congress on September 29, 2006.

Duke Cunningham
An officer in the United States Navy for 21 years during which time he became a flying ace for actions during the Vietnam War. Following his military career he became a member of the United States House of Representatives from California's 50th Congressional District from 1991 to 2005.

On November 28, 2005, Cunningham pleaded guilty to tax evasion, conspiracy to commit bribery, mail fraud, and wire fraud in federal court in San Diego. Among the many bribes Cunningham admitted receiving were the house sale at an inflated price, the free use of the yacht, a used Rolls-Royce, antique furniture, Persian rugs, jewelry, and a $2,000 contribution for his daughter's college graduation party.

Cunningham announced his resignation at a press conference just after entering his plea. On March 3, 2006, U.S. District Judge Larry A. Burns sentenced Cunningham to 100 months (eight years and four months) in prison.

Richard Nixon
President of the United States, serving from 1969 to 1974.

Nixon evaded taxes, accepted illicit campaign contributions, ordered secret bombings, and harassed opponents with executive agencies, wiretaps, and break-ins. The only U.S. President to have resigned from office. His resignation came in the face of imminent impeachment related to the Watergate scandal.

Scooter Libby
Former Chief of Staff and assistant for National Security Affairs to U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney and a former presidential advisor.

On October 28, 2005, Libby resigned his government position, hours after being indicted by a grand jury. He was charged with one count of obstruction of justice, two counts of perjury and two counts of making false statements. His trial has not yet occurred.

Bob Packwood
Packwood was elected to the Senate in 1968, defeating Wayne Morse. He was reelected in 1974, 1980, 1986 and 1992.

In all at least twenty-nine women accused Packwood of sexual assault and abuse.
With pressure mounting against him, Packwood finally announced his resignation from the Senate on September 7, 1995, after the Senate Ethics Committee unanimously recommended that he be expelled from the Senate for ethical misconduct.


Alcee Hastings
A member of the United States House of Representatives representing the 23rd District of Florida.

In 1981 Judge Hastings was charged with accepting a $150,000 bribe in exchange for a lenient sentence and a return of seized assets for 21 counts of racketeering by Frank and Thomas Romano, and of perjury in his testimony about the case. He was acquitted by a jury after his alleged co-conspirator, William Borders, refused to testify in court (resulting in a jail sentence for Borders). In 1988, the Democratic-controlled U.S. House of Representatives took up the case, and Hastings was impeached for bribery and perjury by a vote of 413-3. Voters to impeach included Reps. Nancy Pelosi, Steny Hoyer, John Conyers and Charles Rangel. He was then convicted in 1989 by the United States Senate, becoming only the sixth federal judge in the history of the United States to be removed from office by the Senate

Hastings was elected to the House of Representatives in 1992. He is a member of the Congressional Black Caucus and was elected President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe in July 2004. Today, as a Senior Democratic Whip, Hastings is an influential member of the Democratic Leadership. Congressman Hastings is also a member of the powerful House Rules Committee and is a senior Member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI). On the HPSCI, Hastings is the Ranking Democratic Member of the Subcommittee on Terrorism and Homeland Security.

William Jefferson
A member of the U.S. House of Representatives since 1991.

He is currently the subject of a corruption probe, and in May 2006 his Congressional offices were raided, as well as his home in Northeast Washington, where, the FBI alleged, they "found $90,000 of the cash in the freezer, in $10,000 increments wrapped in aluminum foil and stuffed inside frozen-food containers."

In the midterm election on November 7, 2006, Jefferson received 30% of the vote against several opponents, and then proceeded to win in a runoff election against Louisiana State Representative Karen Carter on December 9, 2006.

Bill Clinton
42nd President of the United States.

In 1998, as a result of allegations that he had lied during grand jury testimony regarding his sexual relationship with Monica Lewinsky, a young female White House intern, Clinton was the second U.S. president to be impeached by the House of Representatives. In a separate case, Clinton was disbarred from his Arkansas law license for five years and ordered to pay $25,000 in fines to that state's bar officials. The agreement came on the condition that Whitewater prosecutors would not pursue criminal charges against him after he lied under oath about his relationship with White House intern Monica Lewinsky. Clinton, like the only other president to be impeached, Andrew Johnson, served the remainder of his term.

Gerry Studds
An American Democratic Congressman from Massachusetts who served from 1973 until 1997.

In 1983, he admitted to having had an affair with a 17-year-old page in 1973 and was censured by the House of Representatives.

Studds was re-elected to the House six more times after the 1983 censure.

Barney Frank
A member of the United States House of Representatives.

In 1990, the House voted to reprimand Frank when it was revealed that Steve Gobie, a male prostitute that Rep. Frank had befriended after hiring him through a personal advertisement, claimed to have conducted a prostitution ring from Frank's apartment when he was not at home. Frank had dismissed Gobie earlier that year, and reported the incident to the House Ethics Committee, after learning of Gobie's activities. After an investigation, the House Ethics Committee found no evidence that Frank had known of or been involved in the alleged illegal activity. Gobie, however, disputes Frank's account. The New York Times reported on July 20, 1990 that The House Ethics Committee recommended "that Representative Barney Frank receive a formal reprimand from the House for his relationship with a male prostitute" Attempts to expel or censure Frank failed; instead the House voted 408-18 to reprimand him. This condemnation was not reflected in Frank's district, where he won re-election in 1990 with 66 percent of the vote, and has won by larger margins ever since.

Gary Condit
Served in the House of Representatives from 1989 to 2003.

In May 2001, Condit became the subject of national news coverage after the April 30 disappearance of Chandra Levy, a young Jewish woman working as a Washington, D.C. intern originally from Condit's district. Police questioned him twice, and Condit denied having an affair with her; however, after Levy's aunt went public with conversations she had had with her missing niece about the adulterous liaison, police questioned him a third time, and Condit confessed to the relationship. When the affair began, Condit was 53 and Levy was 23.
Suspicion deepened when Condit tried to avoid answering direct questions during a televised interview with news anchor Connie Chung on August 23, 2001. This followed news reports that Condit had an affair with flight attendant, Anne Marie Smith.

Condit faded from the news following 9/11, only to reappear during his announcement to run for an eighth term on December 7, 2001. Condit lost the primary elections in March 2002 to his former aide, then-Assemblyman Dennis Cardoza, and left Congress at the end of his term in January 2003.

Mike Lowry
Served as the twentieth governor of the U.S. state of Washington from 1993 to 1997.

He chose not to run for re-election to a second term due to a sexual harassment scandal in which his deputy press secretary, Susanne Albright, accused him of making inappropriate remarks and fondling her.

Brock Adams
A Democrat from Washington and served as a U.S. Representative, Senator, and United States Secretary of Transportation.

He chose not to be a candidate for reelection in 1992 after eight women made statements to The Seattle Times alleging that Adams had committed various acts of sexual misconduct, ranging from sexual harassment to rape.

Patrick Kennedy
He serves in the United States House of Representatives, representing the first district of Rhode Island.

On May 4, 2006, Kennedy crashed his 1997 Ford Mustang convertible into a barricade on Capitol Hill at 2:45AM. He had been operating his vehicle with the lights off in the early morning darkness. Officers at the scene said that Kennedy appeared intoxicated, smelled of alcohol and was visibly staggering, but Kennedy claimed that he was merely disoriented from prescription medications Ambien and Phenergan A woman who works at the nearby Hawk & Dove bar said that he had been drinking there. A second report cites the capitol police have additional "witnesses" to Kennedy's drinking at the Hawk & Dove before the crash.
Kennedy also stated to officers that he was "late for a vote." However, the last vote of the night had occurred almost six hours earlier. The standard field sobriety test was not administered. Kennedy was driven home by an officer. On May 5, 2006, Kennedy admitted he has an addiction to prescription medication and announced he would be re-admitting himself to a drug rehabilitation facility at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota where he has sought treatment for prior addictions. He has stated that he has no recollection of the car crash. On June 5, 2006 Kennedy was released from drug rehab.

Kennedy has stated that he does not plan to resign.

Note that all of the Republicans resigned, all of the Democrats either served out the term or are currently in office.

That is all for now, feel free to add any and all I have missed in the comments.

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