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M a c r o M a y h e M

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Dig this dirt... on Bilray's Abramoff Connection and Bill Morrow's Stem Cell-out.

It sounds like Morrow and Bilbray are attacking each other...

What is worse they sound pathetic in their attempt to out "conservative" each other.

The real truth is that neither are conservative - they are just crooks.

"For the last few months, Republican political consultants, campaign managers and others have been predicting the 50th Congressional District race to replace former U.S. Rep. Randy 'Duke' Cunningham would turn into a mudslinging free-for-all.

In the wake of Cunningham's resignation in November after pleading guilty to taking millions in bribes, the number of candidates grew to 14 as of late last week. And the more the competition increased, the more likely it became that dirty politics would come into play, those political observers predicted.

It appears the pundits may have been right.

In recent days, two so-called hit pieces ---- campaign fliers or e-mails that portray a candidate in the worst possible light and often contain half-truths ---- have surfaced. One was an e-mail containing a memorandum that cast former Congressman and Republican candidate Brian Bilbray as a liberal with questionable ethics."

Its starting to get deep.. that FILTHY Liberal...

.. here we go with Morrow.

Anti-abortion activist James Hartline sent the e-mail to the North County Times on Jan. 30 in which he not only excoriated (
this is a bad thing for...) Morrow but also the senator's wife, for her work as vice president and general counsel for a nonprofit organization that advocates for California's biomedical industry and embryonic stem cell research and other cutting-edge technologies and life sciences. The California Healthcare Institute's Web site is http://chi.org./

Reached by phone Friday, Hartline said that he "may have" sent the report to the North County Times and confirmed that he is the author of the piece.

The inflammatory report, titled "The secret embryonic stem cell death agenda of Senator Bill Morrow," calls its revelation of Barbara Morrow's job "one of the biggest bombshells dropped in the history of California's conservative movement."

Not true, people are entitled to their opinion... Things get bizzare with Bilbray...

An anonymous source from an operation that calls itself the "Bilbray File" recently sent an e-mail to the North County Times that included a copy of a memorandum listing information and articles published over the years on former U.S. Rep. Bilbray. The e-mail attributes the memorandum to "Concerned Republicans in California's 50th Congressional District." The organization does not show up on databases of either the California secretary of state's office or the Federal Election Commission.

The articles cover everything from Bilbray's 1996 trip to the Northern Mariana Islands and his lobbying activities, to his voting record on gun-related issues. (The organization Gun Owners of America gave him an "F" rating in 1998; see www.gunowners.org.)

There was also a reference to the support he received from a Republican group that advocates for the rights of gays and lesbians. FEC records show that Bilbray has received campaign contributions from the Log Cabin Club.

The articles and other information in the "Bilbray File" all appeared to be an effort to cast him in a negative light or to imply that he is a liberal.

"This is a calculated dirty-tricks campaign against me," Bilbray said last week.

Bilbray, who served in Congress from 1996 to 2000, said he believes the anonymous e-mail was sent to the newspaper by a Republican, not a Democrat.

"The one way to attack without being blamed for it is to do it anonymously through the Internet. I am used to the Democratic machine doing so, but it's sad to see Republicans doing the same stuff," he said.


One of the articles mentioned in the "Bilbray File" was a 1998 New York Times story that talked about a possible connection between Bilbray and former Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff. Abramoff recently pleaded guilty to fraud, corruption and tax-evasion charges.

In his pleas, Abramoff admitted to taking millions of dollars in kickbacks and failing to pay millions in taxes on his ill-gotten gains connected with his lobbying activities for several American Indian tribes. In addition to Abramoff's role with the tribes, in the mid- to late 1990s, he also worked as a lobbyist for the government of the U.S. protectorate of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, as it fought to prevent U.S. legislation from being passed that would have removed the islands' exemption from having to pay U.S.-level minimum wages.

The New York Times article said that the government of the Mariana Islands had invited "nearly all members of Congress and their aides" to visit the islands and paid for the trips of those who accepted the invitation. The article also said that Abramoff "arranged" for the trips. The same article said those guests included Bilbray and his wife. An April 29, 2005, story by The Associated Press reported that Abramoff later reimbursed the Mariana Islands' government for many of the trips to the islands by members of Congress.

Asked about the reports, Bilbray said last week that he and his wife made the trip to the Marianas in late December 1996. However, he stressed that the government of the Northern Mariana Islands paid for the trip, not Abramoff. Bilbray said he did not know whether Abramoff was involved in that invitation nor whether the lobbyist repaid the government for the trips.

The trip had nothing to do with the legislation to increase the minimum wage that Abramoff was trying to get defeated in Congress, Bilbray said.

He received the invitation from the governor of the islands, because the islands were struggling to come to grips with foreign guest workers who were giving birth to children while staying there and then claiming birthright citizenship for their children, Bilbray said. Before he went on the trip, he also requested that the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct give its approval for the trip, he said.

In a Dec. 13, 1996, letter to Bilbray, the committee approved his request ---- with qualifications.

"Assuming the Committee's understanding regarding payment of the costs of the trip is correct, you may participate in the trip under this provision," the letter stated.

Bilbray said he doesn't remember ever having met Abramoff. However, "I assume I have run into him, but I never received any contributions from him," Bilbray said, adding that none of his staff members at the time remembered having met Abramoff.

Sounds like President Bush and Bilbray have two things in common. 1) Meeting Abramoff. 2) Failing to remember the occasion. We can only hope Bilbray didn't take any of "Black" Jack Abramoff's casino/lobby money - but only time will tell. It would be best to avoid trading the CunningScam scandal for a "3 Dollar Bill-bray" scandal. Yikes!

When you vote, you have to ask yourself... Do you want to condone the mudslinging that Bilbray and Morrow have engaged in? Or would your rather keep your Congress clean?

The article is a good read. No wonder RJB is working it too.


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