This story by The Hill, about how “[a] number of Senate candidates have not cut their ties to companies with vested interests in legislation the contenders could be voting on, should they be elected,” has the right idea but is poorly executed at best. Thus, all we get on George Allen, who has glaring, egregious conflicts of interest, is the following boilerplate, including a whitewashing statement by the Allen campaign. #FAIL
Allen earned $350,000 last year from George Allen Strategies, a Beltway-based firm he launched after he lost his Senate reelection bid in 2006 that employs a former Allen staffer who is a registered lobbyist.
“Clients of Gov. Allen’s firm have already been properly disclosed on his personal financial disclosure statements that have been publicly filed with the U.S. Senate. If elected to the U.S. Senate, George Allen Strategies will no longer be in operation,” said Allen spokeswoman Katie Wright when asked about which clients Allen’s company is currently advising. The forms were filed in May.
Allen and former Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine (D) are locked in a tight race.
That’s it? Seriously? That’s what “reporting” passes for these days? And they wonder why the corporate media’s dying? So lame. In fact, if The Hill had done a bit more work on this, and/or if they had had the cojones to push a little harder, they would have told their readers that:
*Allen didn’t have to submit financial disclosure reports before he started running for the U.S. Senate this time around, so there’s nothing about his clients in earlier years, and the financial disclosure form only requires that he list sources of income who gave him more than $5,000 during the reporting period. Wow, that’s really helpful. Not.
*Allen goes to great lengths to hide the real sources of his money; for instance listing Navigators Global, itself a giant lobbying firm, as one of his consulting clients, thus allowing no way to see who his ultimate clients really are. Clever, clever!
*Allen is on the Board of Directors of several companies which could benefit from congressional action in their favor.
*The last time Allen got elected, back in 2000, he failed to disclose stock options he still owned from a corporate board he had served on (Xybernaut — see here for more on that sordid story!). Xybernaut was a government contractor, and Allen wrote a letter on their behalf while he owned their stock (which he, again, failed to disclose). Since then that company has gone bankrupt and their top management indicted for money laundering, etc.
*The interests funding Allen’s pro-fossil-fuel, anti-clean-energy and climate science denial activities include major backing by Big Oil companies like ExxonMobil. Shocker, huh?
Does any of this give you a warm and fuzzy feeling about George Allen, let alone make you want to vote for him? No, I didn’t think so. Does all of this make you wish the media would do its job and really dig into Allen’s sleaziness? Yes, but don’t hold your breath; they’re too busy working on their phoney narratives about “Mitt’s comeback” (which isn’t happening) and other assorted bull****, instead of doing their actual jobs. Meanwhile, the George Allens of the world get away with…well, not murder, but some really bad stuff.