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Unfit for Leadership


In case anyone missed it this weekend, CNN reported that Rahm Emanuel, former head of the DCCC and now designated to chair the House Democratic Caucus, was aware of suspicious Mark Foley emails to pages in 2005.  Justin Rood at TPM Muckracker says:

"A 16-year-old kid was entrusted by his parents to the U.S. House of Representatives, and Congress has a responsibility," Rep. Rahm Emanuel (D-Ill.), chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, told the Chicago Tribune in October.

"The most important questions are, 'What did the Republican leadership know, when did they know it and, if they knew something, why didn't they do anything to protect the child?'"

Now, Emanuel's questions are boomeranging back on him and his Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

So far, Emanuel's office can't be reached for any statements, according to Rood.  Glenn Greenwald performs a vivisection of Emanuel's past appearance on This Week with Georgie Stephanopoulis from back during the height of the Foley scandal.  During that interview, Emanuel donned his ballet togs to dance around the issue of his familiarity with the emails to say he "never saw" them.   

Our own Blue America candidate researcher Howie Klein has suspicions about Emanuel's foreknowledge of the Foley ticking time bombs based on Emanuel's early efforts to recruit a former Republican to run  as a "Democrat" for Foley's very red district seat, sleezily pushing out a fine local progressive in Dave Lutrin.  Why was Emanuel so interested in this race so early, when no signs publicly available pointed to any Foley vulnerability?

Not many people know a lot about the inside machine illegality and thuggery brought to bear to get Emanuel into his congressional seat in the first place.   Don Tomczak, whose illegal efforts on behalf of his campaign Emanuel denies all knowledge of, is headed to prison in the wake of Patrick Fitzgerald's investigation of the corrupt Daley machine in Chicago.   "Tomczak ran trucks on water projects, took at least $400,000 in bribes and commanded armies of political patronage workers hired in violation of federal court decree":

But if City Hall had not sent Don Tomczak, the corrupt city water department boss, to Emanuel's congressional campaign in 2002–and Tomczak's political army of hundreds of city workers who stumped the precincts with the promise of overtime–then Emanuel wouldn't have narrowly defeated a local grass-roots Democrat.

In 2002, Emanuel beat a fine grassroots progressive with the help of all this machine campaign illegality, and Emanuel would have us all believe he knew nothing about it.

Speaker Elect Pelosi, Rahm Emanuel is corrupt.  It's very probable he knew about these suspicious Foley emails well in advance, and rather than initiate an immediate Ethics Committee review or take responsibility to ensure the FBI was informed right away – as Melanie Sloan of CREW did when she received information about Foley –  then he consciously chose to keep kids at risk for the sake of dirty insider power politics.

Rahm Emanuel does not belong in a leadership position in the House.  Voters cited corruption as their top issue in this election, along with Iraq.  Democrats need to be better than Republicans to sustain any governing majority, and more importantly, to change the direction of our country.  If Rahm Emanuel won't resign his leadership position, Speaker Elect Pelosi, then he should be removed. 

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Pachacutec did not, as is commonly believed, die in 1471. To escape the tragic sight of his successors screwing up the Inca Empire he’d built, he fled east into the Amazon rain forest, where he began chewing lots of funky roots to get higher than Hunter Thompson ever dared. Oddly, these roots gave him not only a killer buzz, but also prolonged his life beyond what any other mortal has known, excluding Novakula. Whatever his doubts of the utility of living long enough to see old friends pop up in museums as mummies, or witness the bizarrely compelling spectacle of Katherine Harris, he’s learned a thing or two along the way. For one thing, he’s learned the importance of not letting morons run a country, having watched the Inca Empire suffer many civil wars requiring the eventual ruler to gain support from the priests and the national military. He now works during fleeting sober moments to build a vibrant progressive movement sufficiently strong and sustainable to drive a pointed stake through the heart of American “conservatism” forever. He enjoys a gay marriage, classic jazz and roots for the New York Mets.