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What Is the Difference Between Harry Reid and Most Other Public Servants?

Well, for starters, most other public servants are not nearly as rich as Harry Reid is. Of course, there is nothing wrong with being wealthy, but the way in which Reid has acquired his wealth ought to raise more than a few eyebrows, as I have written before:

Last month, as the Senate was busy negotiating the final details of its Ukraine aid package, Majority Leader Harry Reid became temporarily distracted with a campaign finance issue. Since winning re-election in 2010, Reid’s campaign had purchased gifts for supporters and donors from vendors like Bed Bath & Beyond, Amazon, Nordstrom, and the Senate gift shop, among others. But one round of spending was directed to a less recognizable firm: Ryan Elisabeth, a jewelry line.

In 2012 and 2013, the campaign spent $31,267 purchasing gifts from the company, which is owned by Reid’s granddaughter, Ryan Elisabeth Reid. All told, she took in nearly seven times more cash than all vendors of donor gifts combined during that period of time.

Veteran Nevada political journalist Jon Ralston first reported the news after receiving a tip about the expenditures. (Ryan Elisabeth’s last name did not appear on the FEC reports, and the senator’s office initially failed to confirm her identity.) While Sen. Reid does not appear to have broken the law, he understood that the purchases created a perception of favoritism. Lamenting the unwanted attention heaped on his granddaughter, he decided after the news broke that “it would be best to pay for her work out of my own pocket.”

This was not the first time that Reid had mixed family and politics — or potentially run afoul of ethics rules.

Read the whole thing, which is chock-full of instances in which Reid seriously skirted–or completely broke–ethical rules. Again, why did anyone obsess over Reid’s McCarthyite charges regarding Mitt Romney’s tax returns, which was an utter non-story in comparison to Reid’s complete disregard for higher standards and propriety? I recognize that some will respond with “because Mitt Romney is a Republican and there is a double standard at work here.” But while that is an explanation, it is not an excuse.

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4 responses

  1. ” I recognize that some will respond with ‘because Mitt Romney is a Republican and there is a double standard at work here.’ But while that is an explanation, it is not an excuse. ” More, it’s a fact: “Left Turns” by UCLA Poli sci prof Tim Groseclose.

  2. Just as a sort of FYI:

    When I clicked the link to your earlier, comprehensive essay . . .

    (https://pejmanyousefzadeh.net/2014/04/19/for-those-wondering-what-a-real-political-scandal-looks-like ) . . .

    . . . Firefox gave me the rather intimidating “this site has invalid certificate . . . ” message, and when I clicked to continue on to the site, it gave me two more warnings to click through (such as, real, honest sites like banks and companies would never make you choose to cast your security aside like you have to do to get to this site . . .”

    Maybe you have a software problem. Or, as my inner cynic reminds me, maybe you have a Mozilla problem?

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