WHY MY OSTENSIBLE PARTY, THE DEMOCRATS, WILL NOT BE ABLE TO USE BUSH’S CORPORATE HISTORY AGAINST HIM
From today’s NY Times
The bill, which has been vigorously opposed by consumer-rights groups, had long been the top legislative priority of credit card companies and some banks, which insist that many debtors abuse the bankruptcy laws to escape debts they should be able to pay. The companies sharply stepped up campaign contributions to members of Congress in recent years as they promoted the legislation.
Among the biggest beneficiaries would be the MBNA Corporation of Delaware, which describes itself as the world’s biggest independent credit card company. Ranked by employee donations, MBNA was the largest corporate contributor to President Bush’s 2000 campaign.
The company has also recently acknowledged that it gave a $447,000 debt-consolidation loan on what critics viewed as highly favorable terms to a crucial House supporter of the bill only four days before he signed on as a lead sponsor of the legislation in 1998. Both MBNA and the lawmaker, Representative James P. Moran Jr., Democrat of Virginia, have denied that there was anything improper about the loan.
I’m too disgusted to comment.
I posted this four years ago, and it presents two problems that Democrats will have to deal with in this election cycle, as the culture of corruption in Washington begins to be an issue.
First, the moral issue, which is simply that we won’t solve the problem by solving only the Republican half of it.
Next the instrumental/political one which simply is that the Democrats can’t make a strong stand on the specifics of corruption – even though their proxies at TAP are hammering Rick Santorum right now – because they themselves are too vulnerable.
As I’ve said, I think there’s an opportunity for the Democrats to use this and make both moral and political progress – but it will require cleaning their own house first. I think that’s a smart political move, not a dumb one, because it iwll show the American people that they are serious about changing the culture in Washington.
Until then, it’s just chaff.