The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #62901 Message #1666806
Posted By: Amos
11-Feb-06 - 11:44 AM
Thread Name: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
Excerpts from recent remarks by Sen Barbara Boxer on the flooor of the Senate:
Mrs. BOXER. Madam President, I rise now to discuss an amendment
on behalf of myself and Senators Kerry and Lautenberg which
expresses the sense of the Senate that the White House should
provide the public with a thorough account of the meetings that
the President, his staff, and senior executive branch officials
held with Jack Abramoff . The public's confidence in the
government has been rocked by the widespread reports of public
corruption involving Jack Abramoff.
On January 3, Mr. Abramoff pleaded guilty to conspiracy, fraud,
and tax evasion, charges that carry up to a 30-year sentence.
He agreed to cooperate with prosecutors in their investigation
of a number of public officials, and we don't know where all
this will lead. I urge the Justice Department to continue its
investigation into any bribery and corruption.
The damage to the public trust from the Abramoff scandal,
combined with the recent prosecution of Congressman Randy
Cunningham and the indictment of Congressman Tom Delay, is
massive. The investigation by the Department of Justice has
really just begun. But right now, sadly, there is a very low
opinion of politicians, and trust must be restored with the
American people. We cannot govern effectively without the
support and confidence of the people. We are supposed to be
their representatives. We owe them everything, and we must
start with honesty, with ethics, so we can regain their trust.
If the people have lost confidence, we have to win it back.
Every Senator I know has searched his or her records for
contributions from Jack Abramoff, from his associates and the
tribes he represented. Each of us has responded in our own way.
But to my knowledge, we have all made our actions public. We
have told our constituents what the situation is and whether we
plan to do something about it.
In the State of the Union Address, the President said: "Each of
us has made a pledge to be worthy of public responsibility--and
that is a pledge we must never forget, never dismiss, and never
Those are noble sentiments, very noble sentiments, and I
challenge the President to live up to them.
...If we are going to restore confidence in our government, it
starts with simple openness--not with saying: Oh, this is
privileged, this is secret. I will tell you right now, we all
learned it from our moms and dads. When somebody says "this is
secret," watch out. Our government is supposed to be open, not
I hope there will be strong support for this particular
amendment. I believe its timing is crucial. We can't let any
more time elapse.
There are calls for--and I am joining them--a special
prosecutor in this particular case. But even before that debate
begins, let us have everyone come clean on these meetings,
contributions, and the like....
I agree with her. An open government from the top down would be a very refreshing change.