06/21/2005: "Duke-gate" is expanding...
[I know. I really hate the "-gate" suffix thing. I really do. But the caffeine hasn't kicked in yet (I'm learning--the hard way--that people do apparently develop a tolerance to caffeine, and I'm really not ready to knock down two full pots of coffee (straight from the carafe) just to acquire a luxury like "consciousness"), and I'm therefore not as creative as I ought be. So learn to live with it, or die with it on your mind, as A Great And Good Friend Of Mine would say.]
Via this morning's Talking Points Memo, Josh Marshall clues us in that there are further revelations in the Randy "Duke" Cunningham apparent payola scandal:
We'd heard this was coming. Now Copley News Service's Marcus Stern has the goods: "A defense contractor who took a $700,000 loss on the purchase of Rep. Randy Cunningham's Del Mar residence in 2003, and provided a yacht for his use in the nation's capital, forced his employees to make political contributions that benefited the San Diego Republican and other members of Congress, according to three former senior officials of the company.(emphasis added)"Oh, I don't know; right now I'd give you two guesses, and the first two don't count. But Josh points out:
There's also this intriguing nugget: "A third former employee of MZM described being rounded up along with other employees one afternoon in the company's Washington headquarters and told to write a check with the political recipient standing by. The former employee didn't give the name of the politician receiving the donations."
Boy, would it be fun to know who that 'political recipient' was.
And perhaps not that hard since the universe of members of Congress spending serious time on the MZM gravy train seems not to have been that large.Damn. Katherine Harris? Corrupt? Who'da thunk it....
Earlier we told you about Rep. Virgil Goode (R) from Southside Virginia. But don't forget about the rest of folks who got money.
Like Katherine Harris.
In the 2004 cycle the MZM political action committee gave out $34,000 to House candidates. The totals go like this ...
Cunningham, Randy "Duke" (R-CA) $6,000
Forbes, J Randy (R-VA) $5,000
Goode, Virgil H Jr (R-VA) $10,000
Harris, Katherine (R-FL) $10,000
Hunter, Duncan (R-CA) $1,000
Renzi, Rick (R-AZ) $2,000
So Katherine Harris got $10,000 from the MZM Pac. And during the same cycle she got another $32,000 from employees of MZM.
Actually, not just during the same cycle. If you look at this read-out from OpenSecrets.org you'll see that that $32,000 came in 16 checks for $2000 each. And 14 of those $2,000 checks were written out on one day -- March 23rd, 2004, a Tuesday.
The two other were written out on April 1st, 2004 a Thursday by MZM owner Mitchell Wade's wife: Christiane Wade.
With Cunningham and Goode, Mitchell Wade had some very specific piece of business he wanted help with. What was his angle on Katherine Harris?
Len on 06.21.05 @ 07:25 AM CST