30 January 2006

Who is Joy Padgett?

Jim "Jesus is my bro" Petro has chosen state senator Joy Padgett as running mate. A brief web search gave the background information below.

Padgett is from Coshocton and represents southeast Ohio. She was picked to make Petro more competitive with Strickland in that area of the state.

Joy Padgett's brief bio.

In 2004 she defeated Terry Anderson for her Senate seat. That's the same Terry Anderson who was kidnapped and held hostage by Iranian extremists for 7 years. Ten points if you can guess whether Padgett stuck to the GOP campaign playbook and sunk low enough to call a former hostage soft on terrorism and an America-hater.

During that election Padgett also blew off Project VoteSmart's candidate survey (even ignoring Sen. McCain's request to participate). Why would Padgett repeatedly refuse to help citizens become better informed? Is it because her loyalty lies with special interests and not citizens?

Well, at least the NRA trusts Joy Padgett.

Padgett had strong words about Coingate: “I say ‘chop their heads off’. I don’t care who it is. I will push for a very, very strong making sure of that we investigate this thing thoroughly and who have been part of illegal activity will have to pay the most severe price. I personally have a zero tolerance for this. Absolute zero tolerance.”

Nice sound bite, but is there any evidence of Padgett backing up words with actions (I didn't find any)?

Some bills sponsored by Joy Padgett:

SB 6: Education bill. Creates a commitee to make recommendations to help schools meet the demands of the modern workforce. It has a number of worthwhile initiatives, but the committee has no real authority to make changes.

SB 185: A bill to curb predatory lending practices, which have exacerbated Ohio's foreclosure rate (3 times the national average).

SB 235: Allows Ohio to compete for President Bush's "FutureGen" program which gives money to build "zero-emissions" coal-powered power plants. There is no such thing as a "zero emissions" coal power plant, of course; the phrase is yet another linguistic sleight-of-hand. It's called that because the carbon dioxide that is released (i.e. EMITTED) is converted to liquid and pumped into the ground ("sequestration") instead of released into the atmosphere. In other words, it's our descendants' problem, not ours.

The sequestration process also has an additional-- and I'm sure TOTALLY coincidental-- benefit: it helps "dry" oil wells release more oil. That might explain why Texas has generated so much interest in this program, and why so many industry representatives are involved in it.

The FutureGen program is a thinly veiled plan to use public monies for unworthwhile R&D in the fossil fuel industry. It is a gift to Bush supporters, and Joy Padgett is a cog in the quid pro quo machine.

SB 252: Guns, guns, guns!

27 January 2006

81 Points in Perspective

81 points is a hell of a lot. But it doesn't mean nearly as much as the media would have you believe.

Sportswriter Michael Bradley has the proper perspective:

...hats off to Kobe for tormenting the listless Tronno players in a solo show worthy of his one-man-band personality. But let's be clear here: There is no way that this deserves consideration as one of the best performances of all time, no matter how much ESPN decides to hype the event. Gorging one's self at the buffet table does not make one a gourmand, and Kobe's 81 belongs in the All-You-Can-Eat Hall of Fame, rather than the pantheon of epic sporting accomplishments.

Higher Education Still Weak in Ohio

U of Toledo's newspaper reports Ohio tuition still among the highest:

The review ranks Ohio as 15 out of the 50 states for familial financial contributions, placing 40 out of 50 for state government appropriations.

Even with grants and loans, Ohio is behind in assisting students with their financial burdens.

Of Ohio students, 21 percent receive state grants compared to the national average of 37 percent, according to the review.

Wright State's newspaper reports student interest costs are rising:

Students who are currently taking out loans may groan when they hear that Stafford Loan Interest rate have risen 2 percent from 2.77 to 4.7 percent.

UD will increase tuition by 8.1%:

According to UD’s institutional research office, UD’s tuition is fourth-lowest among the 25 largest Catholic campuses. It is very close to the national average for private universities.For this reason, Curran said, he does not face as many questions from students and parents about the rise in tuition as he might otherwise.“They realize we’re much less expensive than other universities of our size,” he said.

State Rep. Earl Martin sponsored a bill to address a part of the problem:

A bill in the Ohio House of Representatives that has recently reached committee would, if passed, give a tax credit of up to $30,000 to Ohio college students who graduate with a degree in math, engineering or the natural sciences.

Summary of HB 359.

If you want to contact your state rep about this bill but don't know how, you can find out his/her name and contact info here.

26 January 2006

We Don't Need No Stinking Horsesense

Detachment from reality is a hallmark sign of mental illness. Is it a hallmark sign of the Republican Party as well?

Exhibit A: Bob Ney still doesn't get it.

Exhibit B: In addition to legislating morality, the GOP wants to legislate responsibility. Two Republican state legislators want to curb teen driving deaths by eliminating carpools and increasing the driving age to 16 and-a-half.

Exhibit C: How screwed up does a party have to be for it to nominate someone to the board of elections who has been found guilty of breaking election laws?

Manslaughter-for-Hire Goes Bad

There's really nothing good that can happen when drugs, guns and sex come together.

The article's best line: "The victim, Anthony "Tone" Chastain, 35, had scored a lucrative drug deal in Dayton before he was shot..."

It's funny to see that in the newspaper.

Also, I'm not a lawyer, but isn't this a typical example of when the charge should be manslaughter and not murder? Or is it even more typical to have an overzealous prosecutor (and inadequate public defender to boot)?

23 January 2006

Cable Costs Less in Lebanon

One thing politicians (these days, Republicans) do that makes me chuckle is talk about competition and markets. That is like Michael Jackson talking about raising children. What they say is very different from what they do (in both cases, behind closed doors in a place disconnected from reality). A perfect example is how deregulation led to less competition and higher cable rates (Why Are My Cable Bills So High?).

Whether Time Warner has a monopoly in Cincinnati is, to some extent, a matter of perspective. Some (Time Warner) claim that satellite providers are competition, while others say not. In truth, comparing satellite and cable is probably somewhere between apples-apples and apples-oranges.

But Lebanon found a way to expand service and lower cable costs.

Given that Lebanon's solution violates Republican dogma, it would be considered anathema by Cincinnati Republicans even though it benefits citizens. It's yet another indication that GOP loyalty is with corporations ("consumers") and not consumers ("liberals").

22 January 2006

Sunday Sports Report

I think we're going to have some good competition in today's NFL matchups. I think the Broncos will beat the Steelers, but that could change if Troy Polamalu has a big game. He (and Joey Porter) could be critical factors.

Back in November, I told my even more sports-minded cousin (EastCoaster) that the Panthers were underrated and that I had a hunch about them. But I have a feeling that hunch has played itself out. The Panthers are a solid team and Delhomme and Smith are playmakers, but Seattle has a solid defense and I think they'll contain the Panthers.

Yesterday was a crazy day for NCAA basketball. Plenty of upsets and blowouts. Will the craziness carry over to football???

LeBron James is still amazing; he scored 51 points. His mother racked up a few points of her own, too.

The latest on wayward Marcus Vick: his court date (for 3 misdemeanor counts of brandishing a firearm) is in March. Maximum sentence is 3 years and $7500. He intends to enter the NFL draft (not that he had a choice since he was kicked off the West Virginia team), but I doubt he'll generate much interest.

Despite support from boisterous fans, Andy Roddick (#2 seed) was beaten by Cypriot Marcus Baghdatis. Now that Roddick is out, Federer's path to the title seems as easy as pie. After all, Agassi, Safin, Hewitt, Nadal, and now Roddick are out.

Unfortunately for Federer, the #4 seed, whom he would meet in the final, is David Nalbandian. Nalbandian is the only player on the tour who beats Federer, and I believe he's the only one with a winning record against Federer. So what would be the easiest draw for every other player might ironically turn out to be the most challenging for Federer. We'll see next weekend.

On the women's side, it's been a while since anyone has made these statements:
Venus Williams lost her 1st round match.
Serena Williams lost her 3rd round match.
Martina Hingis WON her 3rd round match.

And we didn't see this coming: former tennis champion Roscoe Tanner is going to prison.

21 January 2006

Another Brickhead in the Wall

De Magno Opere has a post questioning the way resources are distributed among public vs. charter schools.

Ohio's school funding system has been declared unconstitutional FOUR times. Most public officials would act in the face of such an obvious problem, but this is Ohio. Our state legislature has shown a greater penchant for making excuses than for fixing the problem, in large part due to GOP corruption (the GOP has received substantial money from charter school companies. For more background, read Salon's article on charter school ringmaster David Brennan).

Ohio needs to fix its schools. Stupid people elect stupid leaders. And if you think it's bad now, it could be a lot worse.

20 January 2006

Helping Science Love America A Little More

I think we can all agree that large-scale organized religion and corporate special interests have made America a better place. Where would we be without them? Would you dare to imagine a world without large-scale organized religion and corporate special interests?

Here's one thing about that world: it would probably have more whales. And if there are more whales then there will be more people that want to save them, and that's bad for America. America didn't become great by saving whales; It became great by making lamps out of them.

And another thing is that we would have to rely on peer review instead of censorship for scientific journals. "Peer review" is a term liberals use to make themselves feel all superior and ivory towerish. "Censorship" isn't bad in and of itself, it's only bad when liberals do it. With conservatives, it's more like a pre-emptive strike against bad science. And that keeps America strong.

And finally, great news from out West, where the lawsuit started up by the Pacific Legal Foundation ("the oldest public legal foundation oriented toward the corporate interest") has finally succeeded in its efforts to get the coho salmon off the endangered species list.

Legal News from Around Ohio

The famous Norwood eminent domain case is moving forward at the Ohio Supreme Court. I have noticed in this and other articles that the lawyer for the developers is one Timothy Burke. I wonder whether this is the same Timothy Burke who chairs the Hamilton County Democratic Party (and is an attorney). Are there two attorneys in Cincinnati with the same name, or are they the same person?

The Norwood case has developers and local government on the same side, but the Court just issued a ruling in a different case which a developer wanted to build more houses than zoning ordinances allowed, so he took the town to court. He lost (actually he won, then lost, then lost again). His lawyer says it's a big setback for "developers' rights."

And finally, residents of the Ohio-West Virginia area discovered their tap water (and blood) had "C8," a chemical used by the local DuPont factory. So DuPont bought bottled water for thousands of residents. And then somebody had this idea to test the bottled water...

19 January 2006

Fewer Posts This Week

Still here, just haven't posted much. Light posting next few days.

Meantime, it looks like some female Iraqi prisoners will be released, in apparent acquiescence to the demands of Jill Carroll's kidnappers.

What it's like to be a kidnapped journalist? Here's the story from a Brit who was kidnapped and then inadvertently found and rescued during a raid.

And speaking of man's inhumanity towards man, will there ever be accountability over Abu Ghraib? The WaPo editorializes on A General's Dishonor.

By invoking his right to avoid self-incrimination, Maj. Gen. Geoffrey D. Miller has avoided a much-needed cross-examination of his role in the abuse of detainees at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. He has also added to his dishonor as a commander who oversaw improper interrogations at Guantanamo Bay, then introduced some of the same practices in Iraq in violation of the Geneva Conventions. Gen. Miller's subsequent account of his actions, in sworn testimony to Congress and Army investigators, has been contradicted by at least four other witnesses, so it's not surprising that he has sought shelter in the military's equivalent of the Fifth Amendment. He has yet to be the subject of any charge. But anyone who still accepts the Abu Ghraib cover story peddled by the White House and the Pentagon -- that the abuses portrayed in now-infamous photographs were invented by rogue guards on the night shift -- ought to be asking what this two-star general is afraid of.

16 January 2006

I Was Right (Again)

One of the things women really like is when men point out how right they are all the time. So I'm glad to point out that I was right a total of FOUR times this weekend (see post below), adding considerable points to my overall greatness factor.

But in addition to my perfect pigskin prognostications, there is also some less important news. And that is the Bush administration's latest effort to roll back environmental safety measures as a favor to industrial polluters (shorter CBS News article or Eliot Spitzer's longer press release).

One of my biggest beefs with both major parties is how far behind the curve they are on environmental issues. It's one of the most clear-- perhaps the most clear-- indication of excessive corporate influence. America should be leading the world on environmental issues and instead we're a laughingstock. It's ridiculous.

But there is opportunity for citizen action here. The articles above list the states whose Attorneys General have signed on to the letter opposing the rule changes. Ohio's Jim Petro is not one of them. Why not contact the Ohio Attorney General's office and ask Petro to sign on? After all, he doesn't know the issue is important to the public if the public doesn't let him know.

Those who live in other states can do the same, of course, or express thanks to those who have already signed on.

14 January 2006

Football Predictions

There is an old Saturday Night Live skit with sports reporter Joe Piscopo doing a Super Bowl preview. The skit made a joke of the fact that the two teams that made it to the final were teams that nobody cared about. I can't remember the teams, but it was something like the Bucs and Jets or something like that.

This year,I suppose the Piscopo Bowl would be a Panthers vs. Broncos matchup. I doubt it will happen that way, but then again I did have a sudden rememberance of the Piscopo skit, which I take to be a sign that things won't go according to plan.

So I predict an upset in every game except Seahawks vs. Redskins. But I think even that one might be closer than expected, and I wouldn't be shocked if the Redskins eked out a narrow win. But for everything else, it'll be the underdogs: Broncos beat the Pats, Panthers beat the Bears, and Steelers beat the Colts.

Crazy? Don't tell me, tell the stars. Like George W. Bush, I'm just the messenger.

The Technological Age

If the 19th and 20th centuries were the Industrial Age, then the 21st century will surely be known as the Technological Age, as the following 3 items illustrate:

We knew this was inevitable, but it's still a heck of a thing when Nikon finally decides to stop making film cameras. I have about $2000 of Nikon film cameras and lenses, including the classic FE-2 . I wonder what it will all be worth now.

In Germany it's possible to pay bus, train, and parking fees with a cell phone.

And the coolest thing of all, winners of a computer design competition.

12 January 2006

John Boehner is Just Like Us!

The Plain Dealer reports on John Boehner:

If Congress is to renounce its cozy relationships with lobbyists - the intense chase for campaign money and deal-making that's prompting outrage - Boehner may not represent a sweeping change.

Boehner, for instance, loves golfing with corporate contributors at some of this country's best courses, from California to Virginia. He enjoys dining at Washinton's fine restaurants, often in the company of lobbyists.

Boehner chairs the House committee that oversees education issues, including bills that help set interest rates on student loans. Yet he flies to resorts in the corporate jets of companies that have a direct interest in that legislation...

In 1995, he openly passed out checks from tobacco industry lobbyists to colleagues on the House floor.

For even more on Boehner's enthusiasm for government-by-golf, read John Ryan's post.

Ohio BOE Leaves Door Open for Intelligent Design

The Ohio Board of Education voted 9-8 Monday to retain language in the science lesson plan which allows for critical analysis of evolution.

As usual, the problem is the confusion between critical analysis and Christianity:

"Board member Martha W. Wise of Avon introduced a motion to eliminate the controversial plan. She said her concerns with keeping the plan involved the similarities between Ohio's plan and curriculum history and that of Dover, Pa."


"The Ohio and Dover plans used similar language and both boards had discussed the infusion of a "higher power" into the science curricula, Wise said."


"Several members said that both the American and Ohio Academies of Science had sent the board letters objecting to the science curriculum. Seventeen nationally recognized science and academic organizations had done so."

What about all the letters sent by God and angels? Did you notice they didn't say anything about those?

Damn liberal media.

SecularLeft has an in-depth post on the issue.

11 January 2006

Republican + Corruption = LOVE

Jack and Tommy, sitting in a tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-G.

The Blind Leading the Naked

That's how I'd describe the newsroom at the Dover/New Philadelphia Times-Reporter (one of the Ohio newspapers linked to at right), which printed an outright lie in its LTEs.

Maybe they're playing a game of one-upmanship with The Enquirer.

(via PeopleHaveThePower)

Carson Palmer Recovering After Surgery

The Enquirer reports Palmer had surgery yesterday in Houston. The operation appears to have gone smoothly. Later this week Palmer and his wife will fly to L.A. where Palmer will start his physiotherapy.

(The UC Bearcats just lost a key player to a torn ACL as well).

In other NFL news, the Eagles are allowing Terrell Owens' agent to find another job for him.

And a couple of nice peeks into the personal side of Troy Polamalu and Redskins offensive lineman Ray Brown, who will finally hang it up this year at the age of 43 (!).

10 January 2006

DeLay is Coke, Boehner is Pepsi

More evidence supporting my previous contention that assigning the House leadership to Boehner would be little more than a cosmetic change.

The "Shadow Congress" will keep its offices at K Street.

Alito Hearings as Predictable as Predicted

I just heard Sen. Schumer on C-SPAN speaking at a Dem press conference. He was saying that Alito's answers were unsatisfactory because they were too broad and ambiguous, even though he was asked specific questions. And Schumer said answers like "the President is never above the law" and "the President must follow the Constitution" are hardly notable-- after all, what else would a nominee say?

And then I just happened to read this prediction of how the hearings would go (after the fact):

"Ok – here’s my prediction. Alito will be asked a lot of tough questions by the Dems. He won’t respond to any of them. He’ll instead use vague language about respecting precedent and the importance of not pre-judging anything. Slimy Schumer will go on a lot of talk shows and complain. The American public will yawn. And Alito will get confirmed by a mid-60s/mid-30s count."

And that's the way it's happening. His post has some other remarks on the Alito hearings as well.

Lemons Now, Lemonade Later

First of all, the hit on Carson Palmer was neither dirty nor late. It was a legit play. Until someone shows up with a video from the grassy knoll, that's how it's gonna stay.

I separate sports injuries into 3 categories: muscle, bone, and connective tissue (ligaments, tendons). The best thing to hurt is a muscle; the worst a ligament or tendon.

I've actually had the exact same injury as Palmer: torn ACL and MCL. ACL tears are the bread and butter of orthopedic surgeons ("sportsmedicine" doctors, even though half of them probably can't even throw a football; I doubt mine could). Here's what I think will happen with Carson Palmer:

First, he will get surgery to repair the knee (within the next 2 weeks, I'm guessing). They will most likely replace the torn ligaments with cadaver ligaments which will provide a matrix for the body to reconstruct new ligaments over several months.

You cannot move the leg after surgery, and it's pretty sore for the first week. His leg will be in a brace to keep it immobilized. If you keep it immobilized for too long, however, scar tissue builds up and restricts flexibility. So in the 2nd week physical therapy starts with bending and straightening the joint. The physical therapist "helps" (hurts) you by pushing down on the knee to straighten it out and pushing back on it to bend it. That's what you do over and over for the first few weeks. It's not as pleasant as an evening with Selma Hayek, but the framed newspaper story about Ron Oester on the wall will help boost Palmer's morale.

(Oester tore BOTH his ACL and PCL (A=anterior, P=posterior) in one horribly gruesome play. That was the end of Oester's baseball career and the Reds got a new 2nd baseman. Two years later, Oester was back on the team and better than before).

Palmer will keep the brace on for 4-6 weeks, which they'll continually adjust to allow for more flexibility. When he gets out of the brace, his left leg will seem freakishly thin compared to the right one. He'll spend the next 5 months regaining (and adding) leg strength.

Muscle strength in the thigh is very important following knee surgery. The quadriceps muscles stabilize the knee and mitigate joint laxity, so expect Palmer to come back stronger than before. Stronger legs make better throwers. It may seem counterintuitive, but it's true. Palmer will probably be an even better passer next year.

He won't be 100% by July, but he'll be good enough to show up at training camp and practice. I think it's quite likely that he could start the first game in September.

I also think Palmer will return with renewed resolve to play QB. As of this moment, when people think "quarterback" they think "Peyton Manning" or "Tom Brady." Palmer wants to change that. One of the things he wanted to do was win his first playoff game. He didn't get his shot, and I think he'll return with renewed resolve to get his team back there.

And he won't be the only one.

So my Bengals forecast is basically this: lemons now, lemonade later.

08 January 2006

Two Words: O'Dell Thurman

I figure the decisive factor in today's game will be the Bengals defense. The Bengals turnover stats are so impressive that it's covered up what is essentially a subpar pass defense, as was painfully revealed a couple of weeks ago when the Bills relentlessly penetrated the zone.

The Bengals can't let that happen today. If Buffalo could do it, Pittsburgh can do it better (two of Pittsburgh's offensive coaches are in the pool for some of the open head coaching positions, so they know what they're doing. Check out this remarkable story about one of them).

And then there's Willie Parker. He's not Bettis, but he's fast and he's good. The Bengals have to hold the Pittsburgh running game or they have no chance. And that means our linebackers, especially rookie ILB O'Dell Thurman, have to step it up on coverage of Parker and TE Heath Miller, whom Roethlisberger uses very effectively for pass yardage.

It's possible that Bengals special teams could make some big plays that make the difference, but I think that could go the other way, too. So I think the Bengals fortunes basically rest on the quality of their defense.

I haven't heard one person pick the Bengals to win, but I'll go for it:

Bengals, 38-34.

(i.e. I'm basically contradicting myself and saying the offense will overcome the defense's weakness. It's wishful thinking, but it's not that unimaginable. And it let's me avoid saying "Steelers win.")

07 January 2006

All the House Majority Leader's Men

Someone will eventually make a movie based on the corruption scandal. And by "someone" I mean Quentin Tarantino. The scandal has the key ingredients: money, gambling, power, and hubris. And if that's not enough, it's got
a mob hit and an indicted Congressman going undercover with a wire.

The storyline about politicians going undercover to help the feds isn't exactly a new thing, it seems.

Screenwriters, knock yourselves out!

06 January 2006

More Good Advice the Democrats Will Ignore

TPM gets to the crux (via Atrios):

"To run a campaign, you need ideas the other side can't sign on to. More to the point, you need ideas they can't easily co-opt by counterproposing a watered-down version. That means you need to attack some of the substance of what K Street Republicanism has done.... After all, why is the Medicare bill so crappy? Because the GOP is run by lobbyists. Why can't we make student loans cheaper? Because the GOP is run by lobbyists. Why can't we secure chemical plants against terrorist attacks? Because the GOP is run by lobbyists. Why is the tax code so full of loopholes? Because the GOP is run by lobbyists."

John Boehner: Big Fish in a Dirty Pond

John Boehner is part of Abramoff's web of corruption.

John Boehner might be the next Majority Leader.

John Boehner will still be part of the problem.

Another Glutton for Punishment Enters OH-2

Conservative Democrat Jeff Sinnard has officially announed his entry into the OH-2 primary.

A few lines from his statement:

"It is time to take back our country from the special interests and lobbyists. It is time to end politics as usual and restore faith in our government. We need much more than new faces. We need dramatically different ways of doing the peoples’ business."

"U.S. Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis said, 'A little sunlight is the best disinfectant.'"

I take these lines to be references to Congressional corruption, and I think it's good that Sinnard included them. I can't vote in OH-2, but if I could, I would look for a candidate who acknowledges the severity of the problem and prioritizes lobbying reform and campaign finance reform.

05 January 2006

Pat Robertson's Mouth Continues to Expand at Brain's Expense

The bull market for bullshit shows no signs of receding.

Bob Ney Makes an Empty Gesture

I saw two great rows last night: the Orange Bowl and the Abramoff hearings. More on the football later.

The hearings, which will probably be broadcast and re-broadcast at different times, are worth hearing (check C-SPAN's schedule). Last night they showed McCain grilling Abramoff associate, Italia Federici, who ran the Council for Republican Environmental Advocacy ("Help build on our Republican tradition of conservation").

I know what you're thinking: Republican? Environment? What are those two words doing in the same sentence? Why is Federici a persona non grata to the Senate committee? The High Country News has a good background.

Bob Ney is up the creek. There is a record of quid pro quo between Ney and Abramoff, and the outlook is bleak for both. NPR reported this morning that Ohio Democrats are calling for Ney to resign (not sure how that would help the Dems, but whatever). Ney recently transferred some of his Abramoff money to a good cause, but it's such an empty, transparently self-serving gesture (and a pretty small one, at that) that I can't imagine it would help at all. It reminds me of the phrase "meets minimum requirements."

03 January 2006

Democracy Has Better Chance Without Bob Ney

The Abramoff case is moving forward, and it appears that Ohio Republican Bob Ney will be one of the first to pay the price for being corrupt.

Some may recall Ney's churlish refusal to take the issue of election security seriously. Despite plentiful evidence of problems with electronic voting machines, Ney adopted what turned out to be the GOP party line, which was that voting machines were fine and the only people complaining were liberals because they were still sore about losing in 2000.

The reason why Ney is important to the issue of election security is that he chaired the committee which indefinitely tabled an election security bill. The bill addressed matters of technology and security and was not a partisan ploy. Nevertheless, the GOP pursued standard operating procedure in making bad policy (or, in this case, avoiding good policy) and shielding themselves with the usual "The liberals are coming! The liberals are coming!" noise machine.

Bob Ney is a corrupt official in a party laden with corrupt officials. The party has vigorously opposed election security measures despite widespread evidence of the potential for fraud and error. It's hard to believe this is coincidence, unless you believe people are corrupt in only one way and not in others. But that's not human nature. Human nature is this: people will do what they can get away with.

People can get away with buying the Presidency, so they did it. People can get away with buying legislation, so they do it. People can get away with buying judges, so they do that, too. If it is possible for people to get away with buying elections, who is foolish enough to say they would not do it?

Special interests have the money and the motive. Bob Ney and the GOP want to give them the opportunity.