How Washington Works, Part II

If you were found guilty of committing a crime and fined $5,000, would that be “positive”? No?

Then I guess you’re not a high-priced lobbyist in Washington. Let me explain. Months ago I told folks about Ann Eppard, a lobbyist with very close ties to Rep. Bud Schuster, the powerful chairman of the House Transportation Committee who specializes in pork barrel. Eppard had been charged with taking $230,000 in illegal payments from special interests.

Now Eppard has copped a plea. She admits to taking an illegal $15,000 payment while working on the taxpayer’s tab as Rep. Schuster’s chief of staff. Eppard remarked, “This long and painful ordeal has reached a positive conclusion.”

Chairman Schuster said, “Our trust and respect for Ann remains intact.”

That’s right criminal wrongdoing is “positive” and to at least one deranged congressman worthy of “trust and respect.” Sure, Eppard’s glad she’s not sitting in a jail cell. But the real crime is that Rep. Bud Schuster of Pennsylvania continues to wield power as a committee chairman and can keep throwing our tax dollars around like confetti to increase his power. And how sad that in Washington career politicians and lobbyists celebrate their ability to get away with criminal behavior and keep on riding the congressional gravy train.

I guess crooks of a feather stick together.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

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