Thursday, April 19, 2007

Abramoff sinks another crooked wingnut

WASHINGTON, D.C. (AP)--FBI agents have searched the home of Mormon wingnut Representative John Doolittle (R-CA-4) who is under scrutiny over his collusion with convicted GOP bagman Jack Abramoff, Doolittle's attorney admitted Wednesday.

The search last Friday focused on records of Sierra Dominion Financial Solutions Inc., the front company started in 2001 by Doolittle's wife, Julie, in response to her husband's gaining a seat on the House Appropriations Committee. Julie Doolittle, who runs the business from their home and is the only employee, was on retainer for Abramoff from 2002-2004 for "event-planning" work.

The search of Doolittle's home in Oakton, Va., occurred the same day that Kevin Ring, a former Doolittle aide who then went back to work for Abramoff, abruptly resigned his law firm job and attempted to flee to Mexico.

Doolittle--a nine-term conservative from northern California labeled by Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) as one of the "20 Most Corrupt Members of Congress" for 2006--has blamed it all on his wife.

"My wife has been cooperating with the FBI and the Justice Department for almost three years and that cooperation is going to continue in the future," Doolittle said in a statement Wednesday. "I support my wife 100 percent and fully expect that the fix is in."

Sierra Dominion's records also were subpoenaed in 2004 by the grand jury looking into the Abramoff case. Abramoff pleaded guilty in January 2006 to conspiracy, mail fraud and other charges, admitting to bilking his Indian tribe clients out of tens of millions of dollars with promises to influence decisions coming out of Congress and the Interior Department.

Abramoff is squealing like a trapped rat and one former Republican congressman, scumbag Bob Ney of Ohio, is already in prison as a result.

Doolittle called Abramoff a friend and has numerous ties to the lobbyist beyond his wife's work. They include accepting bags of cash from Abramoff, using his sports box and only reporting it as required when caught, and interceding with the Interior Department in Abramoff's Indian tribe scams.

Julie Doolittle was paid $66,690 from September 2002 to February 2004 by Abramoff's front company, Greenberg Traurig. She was hired to work on a March 2003 fundraiser at the Spy Museum in Washington, D.C., but the event was canceled after the invasion of Iraq. Apart from that, no one can say what she did for all that money.

Julie Doolittle also did fundraising for her husband's congressional campaigns until he was forced to hire an outside fundraiser after it was revealed that they were pocketing fifteen percent of all PAC contributions as a "commission."

Julie Doolittle's attorney did not immediately return a call seeking comment. FBI spokesman Rich Kolko declined to comment. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales faces Congress today.

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