Entry for January 20, 2007

Illustration of Bob Ney from Bradblog, which examined the HAVA sponsor’s corruption January 10, 2006 .

Acording to the Washington Post’s Susan Schmidt and James V. Grimaldi writing in “Ney Sentenced to 30 Months In Prison for Abramoff Deals” today, Judge Ellen Huvelle sentenced former Ohio Congressman Robert Ney to 30 months in prison January 19 for his Abramoff shenanigans, adding three months to the time recommended in the federal sentencing memorandum filed January 3. Ney blames demon alcohol for his exploits peforming official acts in exchange for

luxury vacation trips, skybox seats at sporting events, campaign contributions and expensive meals. Ney also admitted receiving tens of thousands of dollars in gambling chips from a businessman who sought his help with the State Department.

The same reporters wrote one of the first stories on Ney’s ties to Abramoff in October 18,2005, “Lawmaker’s Abramoff Ties Investigated: Ohio’s Ney has disavowed lobbyist.” He will still get his estimated $29,000 pension, according to the Washington Post, even if John Kerry’s S. 196, the Congressional Pension Accountability Act passes, as that measure will not be retroactive. Cunningham is collecting $40,00 and Dan Rostenkowski is collecting $131,000, according to Washington Posts columnist Lois Romano’s January 18 “In the Loop: On the Hill.”

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The other federal district court news last week: Scooter Libby’s judge is seating a jury in the case, after last refusing to hear testimony on “science of memory” expert Dr. Bjork. Read Murray Waas here in the National Journal or here on Democracy Now.

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Contra dance tonight in Blacksburg with Toss the Possum and a Durham caller, Joy Greenwolfe. She’s be calling next month in Floyd with my favorite hammer dulcimer band, No Strings Attached

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Alternet has a piece on “The Second Looting of New Orleans” I want to read.

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