Foster Supporting “Robust Public Option” in Healthcare Bill

But first, though, in case you didn’t receive Rep. Bill Foster’s automated phone call: He’s now got an outreach program of constituent services for “any problems you are having with the federal government,” such as social security or veterans’ issues. You can find the congressman’s staff on hand to help you in the DeKalb Public Library on the second Tuesday of each month at 4 p.m.

Moving on…Rep. Foster is one of 22 representatives who have signed a letter to the congressional leadership in support of a “robust public health insurance option” in healthcare legislation.

The heart of their argument: Continue reading Foster Supporting “Robust Public Option” in Healthcare Bill

Denny Hastert is a Lobbyist

Not that we didn’t see it coming–it was pretty clear that he bailed on us to beat the new “revolving door” rules–but the ABC News Report also did a rundown of the last few sordid years. Besides his part in the Foley scandal,

A 2003 letter Hastert wrote aiding certain Indian tribes threatened to draw him into the Abramoff scandal; Hastert denied wrongdoing. ABC News reported in May 2006 that Hastert had come under investigation in connection with the Abramoff probe. Justice Department officials initially denied he was under investigation, but later said he was “in the mix.” No charges were brought.

In 2006, reporters and good government groups made hay over Hastert’s involvement in funding a highway project, which helped him make $2 million when he sold land he owned nearby. Hastert’s lawyer said there was no connection between the highway project and the land deal.

A 2005 Vanity Fair article alleged Turkish groups and individuals at the Turkish Consulate in Washington, D.C. had discussed funneling tens of thousands of dollars to Hastert in exchange for political favors; his spokesman at the time denied Hastert had any knowledge of Turkish groups and had done no favors.

This is very interesting, because I don’t recall anybody besides certain bloggers ever referencing the Vanity Fair article before, yet Sibel Edmonds has been blowing her whistle in the wilderness for several years. Perhaps her documentary is starting to get some attention. I hope so, because allegations of corruption concerning our national security require thorough investigation. And if Denny Hastert took bribes, I want him in jail.

Foster Supporting the Troops

Our new Congressman has signed on to co-sponsor a piece of pro-soldier legislation, H.B. 3298:

21st Century Servicemembers Protection Act – Amends the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act to allow individuals called to military service to terminate or suspend a service contract, after the date of entry into service or the date of the military orders, if: (1) the service contract (such as phone, cable, Internet, or utilities) is executed before the individual is called to service for a period of at least 90 days; or (2) the person enters into the contract while in military service and thereafter receives orders for a change of permanent station to a location outside the United States, or to deploy with a military unit for a period of at least 180 days.

Provides penalties against anyone who: (1) holds property or funds of a person in military service who lawfully terminates a contract; or (2) violates the 6% limit on interest rates charged to servicemembers during a period of military service.

Also, Rep. Foster has recently opened local offices in Batavia, Dixon, and “Genesco” (I think they mean Geneseo, don’t you?).

Foster on the Job

Bill Foster won the Special General on Saturday, got sworn in on Tuesday and later that same day broke what otherwise would have been a tie on an important ethics legislation vote:

The bill, pushed aggressively by Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), creates an independent, outside panel to investigate ethics complaints against House members. The House approved it last night, 229-182, with most Democrats in favor and most Republicans opposed. That margin is deceptive: Before final passage, the bill first had to clear a much closer procedural vote, which gave House members a chance to kill the idea without, technically, voting against it.

The bill survived that test by a single vote, with Foster voting in favor.

Independent, outside investigations of naughty House members? Be still my heart.

New category starting today: IL-14. Because now that we’ve put him in office we have to see that he continues to meet our very high expectations.

p.s. How did ethics become a partisan issue?