Thursday, March 10, 2005

Delay caught accepting money from foreign agents!

The Rules of the U.S. House of Representatives on Gifts and Travel state that "a Member, officer or employee may not accept travel expenses from 'a registered lobbyist or agent of a foreign principal.' ", however since Tom Delay seems to think that he is above the law, I think he just assumed that this was another rule that did not apply to him.

In a Washington Post Article today, Tom Delay is accused of having taken a $106,921 three day trip to Korea with his wife, Christine; and two other Republican lawmakers, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Ander Crenshaw, both Florida Republicans. That turns out to be $26,730.25 per person for the three day vacation to Korea paid for by a foreign principal, Chairman Seung Youn Kim of the Hanwha Group. The Hanwha Group is one of South Korea's top 10 holding companies.

The documents also show that arranging the lawmakers' trip is just one of numerous steps the lobbyists promised to take for Kim. Others included arranging a meeting with President Bush and lawmakers in Washington.

So first delay and then Bush, was this not the exact same issue that the Republicans got their knickers in a knot about with Clinton? Sounds familiar to me, oriental businessman given access to government officials for large sums of cash.

What is Delay’s excuse? The age old “I didn’t know that they were foreign principals, besides I got permission from an imaginary friend in the ethics committee who also didn’t know because they were not registered as foreign principals when I asked the Ethics Commission for permission.” – Not actual quote, re-enacted for effect.