More than a slap on the wrist, this time

Nearly two years after federal agents reported finding $90,000 in a freezer in his Washington home, U.S. Rep. William Jefferson has been charged with a global campaign to solicit bribes, obstruct justice and engage in racketeering, Justice Department officials said Monday.

The veteran Louisiana Democrat faces 16 criminal counts, said Alice Fisher, assistant U.S. attorney general in the criminal division.

The charges are based on 11 schemes in which Jefferson allegedly solicited bribes for himself and his family from government and business officials in the United States, Nigeria, Botswana, Equatorial Guinea and Sao Tome e Principe.

In February, Nancy Pelosi — now speaker of the House — agreed to place Jefferson on the Homeland Security Committee. Pelosi said the assignment was appropriate, given the committee’s jurisdiction over matters related to Hurricane Katrina. The 2005 storm devastated Jefferson’s district.

The article has some of the usual shuckin’ and jivin’ about how Jefferson “corruptly traded on his good office and on the Congress where he served”.

“Congress” and “ethics” shouldn’t be used in the same sentence.

  1. Peter Rodwell says:

    “Congress” and “ethics” shouldn’t be used in the same sentence.

    Except to deplore the total lack thereof therein.

  2. Improbus says:

    Q: What is the difference between William Jefferson and the other Representatives and Senators in Washington D.C.?

    A: Jefferson got caught with his hand in the cookie jar.

  3. Duh says:

    Four reasons he’s in trouble:

    He’s not the Vice President.
    He’s not the President.
    He’s not white/caucasian/honky/whatever.
    He broke the law.

    Ya gotta know all the rules before you attempt to break one of them.

  4. TheGlobalWarmer says:

    You have to go back and paraphrase the old Gallagher routine: “Con is the opposite of Pro, therefore Congress is the opposite of Progress.”

    It doesn’t matter which party is in power, this type of thing doesn’t change. You can depressed and upset or just watch and treat it all as entertainment.

  5. Gary Marks says:

    When Jefferson was offered “cold, hard cash,” he didn’t quite understand that it didn’t have to remain at subzero temperatures in his freezer 😉

    I’m always a little puzzled when corrupt officials continue to proclaim their innocence, even when the jig is clearly up. He must think that he can escape or reduce his punishment on some minor technicality, but they don’t call it “the bitter end” for nothing.

  6. malren says:

    Four reasons he’s in trouble:

    1. He’s corrupt
    2. He took bribes.
    3. He broke a number of laws
    4. He’s a criminal.

    Don’t excuse his behavior by trying to talk about anyone else. William Jefferson is corrupt. Admit it and move on.

  7. BubbaRay says:

    This man is not even worthy of Hop’s Ultimate King Kahuna Moron Award.

    At least he didn’t kill anybody, like some Mass. Senator who gets re-elected every single time (does Mary Jo Kopechne come to mind?)

    #5, Gary Marks, right on! Thanks for the smile today!

  8. moe29 says:

    Way to go Nancy!! Great decision to put that criminal on the Homeland Security Committee! Leadership, gotta love it.

  9. Arrius says:

    To the racist Duh, his lack of whitness had nothing to do with it beyond him being profoundly dumb in his attempts to get bribes and then profoundly dumb in his efforts to hide his actions. If you think it fair to say he was only proscecuted because he was black then it would be fair for other people to say he was only caught because he was black. Hows that sound to you?

  10. mxpwr03 says:

    But Nancy said this Congress would be the most ethical one in the history of the United States! Why would she lie?

  11. alger says:

    #10 – the pressure to conform, especially to the standards of the White House, are just too strong.

  12. mark says:

    10. Because she’s a politician? Like asking why a car salesman would lie, its ingrained.

  13. hhopper says:

    If he was in China, they would have hung him by now.

  14. RBG says:

    If you look it up, you’ll find a definition of “congress” is being f*cked.


  15. Gary Marks says:

    RBG, I was unaware of that definition, but it certainly elevates the word to a higher level of respectability 😉

  16. Elwood Pleebus says:

    #4 or, as Elvis Costello put it, “I used to be disgusted, now I try to be amused”

  17. Misanthropic Scott says:

    Welcome to the new global economy.

    And this is why I hate both parties. I may hate his party less than the other. But, they’re both sickeningly corrupt.

    Also, corruption of any of the politicians should not be excused regardless of which party you like (or dislike less).

    I wonder what would happen if we prosecuted all elected officials for any crimes they have committed. Would we be left with anarchy?

    TheGlobalWarmer: Thanks. I always forget where that quote comes from. It really is a great one though.

  18. KVolk says:


    Couldn’t agree more.

  19. TheGlobalWarmer says:

    #17 – Glad someone else remembers. In the early days at least, there was a lot more to Gallagher than just the Sledge-O-Matic (TM) (Although, the Sledge-O-Matic (TM) wouldn’t be a bad Congressional discliplinary device.) 😉

  20. Mr. Fusion says:

    #8, Joe and the other wing nut jobs,

    A typical Right Wing Nut Neo-con Evangelical Republican smear job.

    Last year after the initial investigation, Pelosi tried to remove Jefferson from the Ways and Means Committee. When he refused to step down, the Democratic Party caucus voted to remove him.

    Pelosi allowed him to sit on the Small Business Committee this year after his re-election. He has since resigned from that committee.

    Damn it is so much easier to invent crap then actually check it out.

  21. Mr. Fusion says:

    As an aside to my previous post. Pelosi is being consistent. Her comments about Jefferson are the same as she iterated previously when she urged Tom Delay to resign from his Republican leadership position even though “he is innocent until proven guilty” too.

    Of course, ignore the facts and just make up some bullshit. CNN should know better that Jefferson never sat on the Homeland Security Committee. While I expect FOX Spews to screw up a story, I don’t expect a “reputable” organization like CNN to. This smear against Pelosi is the same bullcrap as when the Republicans tried to blame her for the Cross Country jet demand.

  22. Brock says:

    Four reasons he’s in trouble:

    He’s from Louisiana.
    He’s from Louisiana.
    He’s from Louisiana.
    He’s from Louisiana.

    Read the history of the state then decide.

    Let the private sector rebuild if there is a need. Else it’s just pork barrel politics as usual.

  23. joshua says:

    live by the RABID response, die by the RABID response.

  24. Mr. Fusion says:

    #22, Pmitchell

    Nice link. A google search page. But, not one link on the first page says he SAT on the committee.

    You see, Jefferson never was appointed or sat on the Homeland Security Committee. Could you provide one link where he has? Oh, wait, I’ll try one.

    How about the actual House Homeland Security Committee membership page.

    (LOL, LOL, LOL)
    In case you missed it, the nomination of Jefferson was retracted after the Democrats objected in caucus. In spite of their Black caucus’s demand, the Democrats have integrity. His name went from being bantered around behind closed doors to being “appointed by Pelosi” in the press.

    I love it how one dim witted “conservative” decides to go off all half cocked and doesn’t check his sources. The next thing you know, all the Right Wing Nut Neo-con Evangelical Conservative Republicans are spouting the same bull crap. And the really sad part is THEY BELIEVE IT !!!

    I’m sitting up with a sick child tonight. Thank you for that little bit of entertainment into an otherwise puke filled night. But right now I’m wondering who is sicker, you or my kid.

  25. Mr. Fusion says:

    #24, joshua,

    See what I mean about the dim witted conservative not checking his sources and then all the Right Wing Nut Neo-con Evangelical Conservative Republicans spouting the same crap.


  26. Rich says:

    So Jefferson is black man? Why did I assume he was white until just now?

  27. joshua says:

    #26…Mr. Fusion….I go to that link that Mitchell gave us and find a whole bunch of stories about Jefferson getting the seat on the committee, but they probably shouldn’t be trusted as they are from those notorious right-wing, neo-con yellow journalism news sources the Washington Post and CNN.

    Oh wait………aren’t they LIBERAL news sources???


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