Thursday, April 27, 2006

Why America Should Care about Ethics

Mikaela splutters:
I cannot even articulate my outrage but still must direct people to the Washington Post article about why Republicans in Congress feel they can pass a toothless ethics bill:

The scandal surrounding disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff has been a Washington obsession for months, but Republican lawmakers who returned from a two-week recess this week said they felt free to pass a relatively tepid ethics bill because their constituents rarely mention the issue.
Lawmakers acknowledge that the bill is more limited in its scope and impact than the provisions promised by congressional leaders immediately after Abramoff's guilty plea to federal charges of bribery, conspiracy, tax evasion and mail fraud nearly four months ago. But they say they do not feel compelled to push more stringent measures partly because voters do not appear to be demanding them. "We're all being rushed into a bill," said Rep. David L. Hobson (R-Ohio). "We panicked, and we let the media get us panicked."
Jo Maney, spokeswoman for Rep. David Dreier (R-Calif.), a chief architect of the House ethics bill, said: "Many members have told him [Dreier] that they are not hearing about corruption and lobbying reform at home. They hear more about immigration, gas prices." Still, Dreier and Hastert "feel strongly" that the ethics bill "is the right thing to do" and that it will "improve the public's perception of the integrity of the House of Representatives," Maney added.

Do you think these Congress members would say these things to elementary school classes about civics? That we should pass ethics bills to keep up the perception of integrity? Really?

This is horrifying. And yes, I know that Democrats are just as much to blame.

What the hell will it take to light the fire under their asses for change?