Friday, November 10, 2006

What's Up With William Jefferson?

Somewhere else, I asked the question regarding liberals and scandals on their side of the isle; do they not know about the scandals, or do they simply not care? These days, it seems that at the first whiff of Republican impropriety, he (or she) is resigning. Tom Delay - who is most likely innocent, resigned. Mark Foley, whose guilt might not be as it was made out in the media, resigned as well. But, what about old William Jefferson?

- Hoping to salvage his political future amid allegations that he hid bribe money in his freezer, U.S. Rep. William Jefferson was forced into a runoff in Tuesday's election and will likely face a fellow Democrat on Dec. 9.

With 90 percent of precincts reporting in the 2nd Congressional District, Jefferson was leading with 29 percent. State Rep. Karen Carter, D-New Orleans, was close behind with 22 percent. Carter's closest rival, state Sen. Derrick Shepherd, D-New Orleans, had 19 percent.

"I can look you in the eye and tell you that I am innocent of any allegation, any unproven allegations, and that's all they are unproven allegations," Jefferson told supporters at his election night rally as it became clear he would face a runoff.

Not only did he not resign, but it appears he still appears to be in good (enough) favor with the voters. But, really, what do they have to be unhappy about?

The FBI says it has video footage of Rep. Bill Jefferson (D-LA) accepting $100,000 from a FBI informant. Jefferson, who has not been charged with anything, insists that he has committed no crime.

The FBI says it taped Rep. Jefferson putting a suitcase containing the bribe money into the trunk of his car. A search of Jefferson's Washington, D.C., residence revealed that Jefferson hid the money in his freezer, officials say. The agency also conducted a weekend raid of Jefferson's Capitol Hill office

But, Jefferson says he's innocent. Really, what do they have on him? A video tape? What's a little video tape compared to a man's word that he is innocent? But then there is this:
A Louisville man pleaded guilty yesterday in federal court to bribing Rep. William J. Jefferson (D-La.) with more than $400,000 in payments, company stock and a share of the profits to promote the Kentucky firm's high-tech business ventures in Africa.

Oops. Well, that's just one guy. What's one man's word against another? But then there is this:
A former aide to Rep. William Jefferson pleaded guilty Wednesday to federal bribery charges and said a former employer demanded kickbacks and other bribes from an American company that wanted a multimillion-dollar deal with the Nigerian government.
Brett M. Pfeffer, 37, told federal prosecutors that "Representative A," whom he worked for from 1995-1998, insisted his wife should perform all the legal work for a $45 million deal that involved the sale of a Kentucky company’s technology to Nigeria. Pfeffer worked as an aid to Jefferson, D-New Orleans, from 1995-1998.

I’ll give one guess to who is "Representative A."

IGate Corp, the Kentucky company, worked to provide broadband services to Nigerians. I suppose we have THEM to thank for all that scam-spam. The deals were negotiated several years after Pfeffer left Jefferson to work for an investment company that represented iGate. The plot thickens:
Pfeffer also said that "Representative A" told a member of the investment firm that he wanted a member of his family put on the payroll, receiving between $2,500 and $5,000 a month. "Representative A" also told the member of the investment firm, who became a cooperating witness and is identified in court papers as "CW," that he wanted 5% to 7% of the newly formed Nigerian company to be given to his family, according to documents.

In exchange, "Representative A" agreed to help win government approval of the Nigerian deal.

So, I return to my question. Do those who vote for men such as Jefferson (I'm looking at YOU, Democrats) unaware of the scandal, or do they simply not care?