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January 04, 2006

Abramoff's Plea Deal Requires He Dress Like B-Movie Heavy For Rest Of Life

Either that his public relations consultant is Toht from Raiders of the Lost Ark.


Yeah, that's a good look for a man accused of serious crimes. Now all he needs to do is complete the ensemble by burning the relief of a $100 Indian casino chip into his palm.

Just guessing: This won't be as damaging to the Republican Party as the New York Time so obviously desires, but it will be quite damaging indeed to individual Republican politicians -- and some Democratic ones too.

Mr. Abramoff, 46, pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy, fraud and tax evasion, and prosecutors said he used campaign contributions, lavish trips, meals and other perks to influence lawmakers and their aides. Court papers filed on Tuesday singled out just one member of Congress, "Representative No. 1," identified elsewhere as Representative Bob Ney, Republican of Ohio.

But that was cold comfort on Capitol Hill, where there was a sense of lawmakers and lobbyists' waiting for the other shoe to drop. In a city whose history is rife with scandal and the political price it exacts, from the F.B.I. sting operation known as Abscam to the savings and loans collapse involving "the Keating Five," some experts feared that the Abramoff investigation would eclipse all the rest.

While Mr. Abramoff is most closely linked to Republicans, even Democrats, many of whom also benefited from his largesse, acted skittish.

Notice how that's phrased. "Even Democrats, many of whom also benefited from his largesse, acted skittish." Well, if they benefited from his "largesse," why the hell wouldn't they be skittish? What's that "even" doing there? Are they not in the exact same position as Republicans who took money from Abramoff and his cronies?

Apparently not. Republicans are presumed guilty, Democrats are presumed... well, desperate for money and just doing what needs to be done to win elections.

And the passive voice is cute: While Mr. Abramoff is most closely linked to Republicans... Linked by whom? Well, by NYT reporters, among others.

Jack Abramoff is linked to specific Republicans and specific Democrats, not chiefly "the Republican Party." It's those who took the money who have to worry -- and have to prove to the public (if not to the court) that they didn't do any quid pro quo favors for Abramoff.

Although, who are we kidding? They all did.

Letterman Bashing: Just using this Instalanched post to point out this story on David Letterman tellling Bill O'Reilly he's "full of crap" for saying that Cindy Sheehan called terrorists "freedom fighters." She did. And I did a kinda-funny top ten about the very lame and very tired David Letterman just killing time before a long overdue retirement.

Update: John tips, and John Podhoretz confirms at the Corner. His fashion comes from his religion-- he's a Hasidic Jew. I've really never seen a Hasid dress like that, so forgive me.

Kinda ruins the joke a little. Although J-Pod says he's embracing the trappings of his religion a bit more now that the heat's on than he has previously.

Incidentally, I kinda like the look, and would wear it if I could get away with it.

I just wouldn't wear that when photographed during what is, effectively, a perp-walk. Why not throw on a eyepatch and pencil-thin moustache while you're at it?

Joke's Back On Update (Maybe?): Jim Geraghty from TKS says that he's seen Abramoff dressed like a regular K-street lobbyist before, suggesting this was a fashion choice.

Various pictures show him not wearing the black coat and fedora. But then, they all seem to be taken inside. Perhaps Hasid only need to wear the dark coat or clothes and hat when outside? I don't know. Does anyone?

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posted by Ace at 02:50 AM

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