Josh Marshall provides the backstory for the Goss resignation. TPM Muckraker has Goss' statement on his resignation. (It looks like everything anyone is hearing is pointing to the Wilkes-Cunningham-Foggo axis.) UPDATE: More from Laura Rozen on Goss, Foggo, and Negroponte. And questions abound from Huffington Post report on possible Pentagon under secretary resigning in the wake of Cunningham scandal.Continue reading
So, the unexpected Porter Goss resignation is making it's way across the news and blogs. Former Georgia Rep. Bob Barr became the first TV pundit to connect Goss to the Cunningham scandal, according to TPM Muckraker. Laura Rozen at War and Piece writes, "CIA public affairs just told me they will be releasing a statement this afternoon." She also writes in another post: "We heard about photos. But I seriously wonder, if someone showed the Agency the evidence that they had the photos of Goss being at parties his spokesperson denied he ever attended. Maybe the reporting wasn't so "wildly irresponsible" after all, hm? And the thing is, there are apparently a couple other currently serving congressmen in one of the photos described to me. Not doing anything salacious mind you. Just there. The point is, Goss's spokesperson went on the record on Goss's behalf last week to say he was never at any of those parties." Meanwhile Think Progress informs us that Goss' resignation comes as a total shock to the administration. They quote CNN's senior Pentagon correspondent, Jamie McIntyre:
The Defense Department has representatives there and, according to sources, none of the people at that meeting had any advance word that Porter Goss was going to be tendering his resignation. So it indicates the sudden nature that this took place, and again it just fuels the speculation of what the real backstory is here.Although we don't know enough yet, all signs point to Goss' involvement (whether with prostitutes or not) in the Cunningham-Wilkes Watergate parties/corruption. And you thought today was going to be all about "sleeping-while-driving" Rep. Patrick Kennedy. Continue reading
Porter Goss, the head of the CIA, is resigning effective immediately. Ken Silverstein at Harpers.org alleged that Goss attended poker games with Duke Cunningham and Brent Wilkes that may have turned into parties with prostitutes. Could Goss' resignation be related? UPDATE: It seems that news organizations have no idea that Goss and his number three K. Dusty Foggo have had their names swirling around in a prostitution scandal. This bears all the hallmarks of getting out in front of a scandal and the media writes their pieces in the context of a staff shake-up. No successor. No warning. This definitely is not some Josh Bolten staff realignment. The next thing to watch for is what happens to Foggo. If he goes then this is big.Continue reading
Ken Silverstein at Harpers.org provides more info on Shirlington Limousine and their government contracts. Shirlington received a number of government contracts that total $25 million. Also, Silverstein reports that, "The limo company does business under at least four different names; in addition, the office addresses listed on its business filings regularly change. A number of those office addresses are actually at residential buildings or business suites, and calls to the listed phone numbers are taken by an answering service." This sounds a lot like how Brent Wilkes' operated - the creation of shell companies, front companies with no address and voice recordings.Continue reading
- Josh Marshall looks into how Shirlington Limousines came to be connected to alleged-briber Brent Wilkes. The "missing link" appears to be former Rep. Bill Lowery (R-CA), who is now a lobbyist with close ties to Appropriations chairman Jerry Lewis (R-CA).
- Following the money doesn't have to be limited to politics and the Episcopal Diocese of Washington has shown how to follow the money in the religious arena.
- Captain Ed is disheartened by the failure of Coburn's amendments to strip pork from the emergency supplemental. When talking about the Northrop Grumman earmark he asks the question that we all have in our head when thinking this, "Why does a corporation that made $2.4 billion in profit need another $200 million from American taxpayers to cover a loss they've absorbed in that same year?" Amen.
- citizen dc at Daily Kos writes about Karl Rove's "unexplained personal wealth". It is quite strange that a man who doesn't make so much money happens to own million dollar homes. Continue reading
The Wall Street Journal reports today that the CIA has confirmed that K. Dusty Foggo, Executive Director of the CIA, attended "poker games in Washington, D.C., hotel hospitality suites, the use of which is the focus of a federal criminal investigation." Foggo admits to being at the poker games but denies that anything else took place. Allegations have swirled over the past week that lawmakers and CIA and Defense Department officials were using the "hospitality suites" - paid for by defense contractor Brent Wilkes - to rendevous with prostitutes. The allegations come out of a plea deal in the Duke Cunningham bribery case. Foggo stated that any accusation levied at him that involved prostitutes would be "false, outrageous and irresponsible." Justin Rood at TPM Muckraker points out that Foggo has "ties to Wilkes that go back more than 30 years, and have stretched as far as Central America and the Middle East."Continue reading
- blonde moment at Daily Kos writes that Judicial Watch has forced the White House to release the logs detailing visits made by Jack Abramoff. The Associated Press has an article up as well.
- Ken Silverstein at Harpers.org asks how a company run by a guy with a "criminal rap sheet that runs from 1979 to 1989" received a $21.2 million contract with the Department of Homeland Security to provide transportation. The company just happens to be the limo service that is alleged to have delivered prostitutes to Duke Cunningham and other unnamed congressmen and CIA and Defense Department officials.
- The Capitol Report's Tim Chapman reports that Coburns war against earmarks in the emergency supplemental bill will be "front and center this week."
- The Washington Post covered the "play-for-pay" allegations that have surfaced in the corruption scandal of jailed former Rep. Duke Cunningham.
- According to the Associated Press, the FBI has opened an investigation into the administration of Missouri Governor Matt Blunt (R), the son of House Majority Whip Roy Blunt (R-MO).
- A grand jury has opened an investigation into the former head of the FDA Lester Crawford for selling "more than $50,000 in shares in a company regulated by the agency" before he resigned. Continue reading
- Brent Wilkes, co-conspirator #1 in the Duke Cunningham scandal, is going to put a fight, according to TPM Muckaraker, and not plead guilty. That's good news for a bevy of congressmen who call Wilkes a friend. Wilkes would be facing a number of charges in a federal corruption case. And after today's revelations in the Wall Street Journal it looks like that could include being a pimp. As they say, pimpin' ain't easy.
- Boddington at Redstate.org writes about Appropriations Chair Jerry Lewis' (R-CA) attempt to kill the ethics reform bill before the House. Lewis is urging Appropriations members to vote against the reform because of his opposition to the earmark reform in it. Lewis claims that the earmark reform unfairly targets his committee while letting other committees continue to earmark unrestricted. Boddington is highly skeptical of Lewis' argument and quotes Rep. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) who calls Lewis' attempt to change the bill "a poison pill." Continue reading
Bribery? Check! Shady defense contractors with possible connections to domestic spying? Check! Congressman behind bars? Check! And finally, hookers? Check! If scandals were judged like Olympic contests I'd have to give this one a 9.1. Anyways, go read Justin Rood for more. Here's a couple paragraphs from the Wall Street Journal article:
Mr. Wade in February pleaded guilty to giving bribes of more than $1 million to Mr. Cunningham, including cash, antiques and payment for yachts. Mr. Wade, who hasn't been sentenced yet, is cooperating with prosecutors. According to people with knowledge of the investigation, Mr. Wade told investigators that Mr. Cunningham periodically phoned him to request a prostitute, and that Mr. Wade then helped to arrange for one. A limousine driver then picked up the prostitute as well as Mr. Cunningham, and drove them to one of the hotel suites, originally at the Watergate Hotel, and subsequently at the Westin Grand. Mr. Wade told investigators that all the arrangements for these services had been made by Mr. Wilkes and two employees of Mr. Wilkes's company, according to people with knowledge of his debriefing. He said Mr. Wilkes had rented the hotel suites and found the limousine driver, who had "relationships" with several escort services. Mr. Wade told prosecutors that sometimes Mr. Cunningham would contact him to request these services, and he would pass on the request to Mr. Wilkes or his employees, who then made the actual arrangement. Mr. Wade said that other times Mr. Cunningham called Mr. Wilkes directly to make the requests.The FBI is looking into whether other lawmakers benefited from this arrangement as well. Continue reading