Vito Fossella: Corrupt Bush/Cheney/Rove Lapdog
Vito Fossella likes using the term "independent" and he and his followers actually got angry when I called him a Republican. But he IS a Republican and he VOTES like a Republican. I think it is time to review Vito Fossella's record. From the DCCCVito Fossella Corrupt Republican:
FOSSELLA: Supporting Oil Companies, Not Americans
* Rep. Fossella voted against cracking down on the oil and gas industries price gouging.
* Rep. Fossella voted for the GOP energy bill that gave billions to oil, gas and nuclear industries.
* Big oil and gas industries have given Rep. Fossella $62,700. Any surprise?
FOSSELLA: Supporting Halliburton, NOT Supporting Our Troops
* Rep. Fossella voted to continue awarding contracts to Halliburton even if the Pentagon's own audit processes found that more than $100 million of their contractor's costs in Iraq were unreasonable. No surprise that Halliburton gave Fossella $1,500.
* Rep. Fossella opposed expanding access to the military's TRICARE health insurance program to thousands of Reservist and National Guard members, even though 20 percent of all Reservists do not have health insurance, and 40 percent of Reservists aged 19 to 35 lack health coverage.
* Rep. Fossella voted against granting a bonus to grant a $1,500 bonus to every American service member serving in Iraq and Afghanistan, including National Guard and Reserve forces.
FOSSELLA: NOT Independent...Republican Lap Dog
* Fossella received $15,000 from House Majority Leader John Boehner's "Freedom Project" PAC.
* Fossella has taken $1,000 from GOP Whip Roy Blunt.
* Fossella received $5,000 from GOP Whip Roy Blunt's "Rely on Your Beliefs" PAC.
* Fossella voted with President Bush 89% of the time.
* Fossella voted the GOP party line 92% of the time.
Here is a newspaper artilce onVito Fossella's Corruption:
Bay Ridge’s four-term Republican congressman has been dipping into campaign funds to finance pleasure trips to exclusive resorts in Florida, Colorado, Nevada and California, according to published reports.
Rep. Vito Fossella violated federal law when he took $53,142 from his campaign war chest to pay for fun-filled trips to the Bellagio Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas and the Lodge at Vail, according to the Daily News.
The trips often included his wife and two children, the News reported.
In addition to the alleged misuse of campaign funds, the congressman took $11,000 from political consultants and corporate sponsors for “fact-finding missions,” including a $5,000 stay at Turnberry Isle Resort near Miami, which he charged to a political consultant’s credit card.
Fossella also failed to disclose a free roundtrip to Miami on the private jet of the late Richard Adeo, cited by federal authorities as a Gambino crime family associate.
He even sent out a taxpayer-funded mailing in which it appeared that Muppets Elmo and Rosita were endorsing him — a no-no in the public TV world
And, just for the record, this is what the NY Times said about Vito Fossella in 2006:
Fossella [is] anything but the independent fighter for constituents that he claims to be in this campaign. He has been a real water-carrier for the Bush administration and the Republican leadership, staunchly backing the war in Iraq while at the same time denying health benefits to National Guard and Reserve members who make up much of the American force there.
The congressman...has been unsympathetic to environmental concerns and has opposed a woman’s right to choose. He does his constituents no favors by his support for privatizing Social Security. He has voted to protect gun makers and sellers. While Mr. Fossella has lately sought funding to deal with health problems related to to the attacks of Sept. 11, he has largely been missing on important local issues. His Democratic colleague, Rep. Jerrold Nadler, who represents the Sixth District, has often been left to advocate Staten Island’s many transportation needs, including the North Shore rail.
Mr. Fossella has offered only lame excuses for improperly using his campaign funds for skiing holidays in Vail (including lessons and equipment), as well as vacations in Florida — transgressions first reported by the Daily News. He has received donations from a lobbying firm with ties to Jack Abramoff. Earlier this year, he was fined a reported $60,000 for misusing his taxpayer-funded official mailing privileges.
And, by contrast, this is what the NY Times said about Steve Harrison, who is running against Vito again in 2008:
Mr. Harrison...is an attractive alternative to Mr. Fossella in his own right. Mr. Harrison has a presence in both sides of the district; he resides in Brooklyn, while his mother and sister live on Staten Island.
As chair of Community Board 10 in Brooklyn, he demonstrated leadership as he oversaw one of the city’s largest efforts to contain overdevelopment through rezoning. He has a good command of the issues, and a feel for the concerns of the district. Mr. Harrison surprised many with his passion and keen intelligence in a series of debates with Mr. Fossella. The distinctions could not be clearer. We endorse Mr. Harrison for Congress.
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