Just announced by the DSCC: "The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee released a new television ad in Missouri today, 'Family,' which exposes Roy Blunt as one of the most corrupt members of Congress. A nonpartisan watchdog organization, the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, named Blunt one of the most corrupt members of Congress for “misusing” his position by inserting special favors into bills."
The DSCC's full press release may be found below the break.
SEE WHY ROY BLUNT IS ONE OF THE MOST CORRUPT MEMBERS OF CONGRESS IN NEW DSCC AD “FAMILY”
Nonpartisan Watchdog Says Blunt Is One Of The Most Corrupt Members Of Congress
Check Out Why Blunt Represents Everything Wrong With Washington At http://www.dscc.org/family
The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee released a new television ad in Missouri today, “Family,” which exposes Roy Blunt as one of the most corrupt members of Congress. A nonpartisan watchdog organization, the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, named Blunt one of the most corrupt members of Congress for “misusing” his position by inserting special favors into bills.
“After being named one of the most corrupt members of Congress by a nonpartisan watchdog group, it’s clear Roy Blunt represents everything wrong with Washington,” said DSCC National Press Secretary Deirdre Murphy. “Cutting deals with lobbyists might be the Washington way, but it sure raises all sorts of questions for Missouri voters that Congressman Blunt needs to answer.”
Washington insider Congressman Blunt has a record of sticking it to the middle class. Blunt rubberstamped the disastrous policies put into place by former President George W. Bush that protected Wall Street and exploded the federal deficit. After leading the charge to bailout big banks to the tune of $700 billion, Blunt now stands in the way of commonsense efforts to jumpstart job creation. The people of Missouri can thank Blunt for thousands of lost jobs, a huge trade imbalance, and Wall Street bank bailouts.
Shopkeeper: I read Roy Blunt was one of the most corrupt Members of Congress.
Source: CREW Most Corrupt Report 2005; CREW Most Corrupt Report 2006; CREW Crooked Candidates Report, 2010
Blunt Named One of 13 Most Corrupt Members of Congress. In 2005, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), named Blunt one of the 13 most corrupt members of Congress. CREW named Blunt because of his alleged “misuse of his position for the benefit of his family.” The report cites Blunt’s involvement in pushing legislation that it says benefited Philip Morris and United Parcel Service. Blunt's wife, Abigail Perlman, is a lobbyist for the Altria Group, which owns Philip Morris, and a son, Andrew Blunt, lobbies for UPS in the Missouri Statehouse. [CREW Most Corrupt Report, 2005]
Blunt Named One Of 20 Most Corrupt Members Of Congress. In 2006, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) named Roy Blunt in the second annual “20 Most Corrupt Members of Congress” report, a report documenting “the egregious, unethical and possibly illegal activities of the most tainted members of Congress.” It marked Blunt’s second consecutive year to be included in the report. [CREW Most Corrupt Report, 2006]
Blunt Named One of 14 Most Corrupt Candidates of 2010. In 2010, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) named Blunt one of the 14 most corrupt candidates running for the House or Senate. [CREW Report, 2010]
Lobbyist: We have a certain way of doing business here in Washington.
Shopkeeper: That’s from a nonpartisan watchdog.
CREW a Well Known, Oft-Cited Nonpartisan Organization: News outlets throughout the country have cited reports and statements issued by CREW, referring to it as a “nonpartisan” organization:
- Las Vegas Review Journal: “CREW, a nonpartisan Washington-based group, has said the situation raises potential employment and harassment issues.” [Las Vegas Review Journal, 7/21/09]
- CNN: “Melanie Sloan heads up the nonpartisan watchdog group CREW, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. CREW is suing the Obama administration for the release of White House visitor logs relating to coal company executives.” [CNN Transcript, 7/1/09]
- Pittsburgh Post Gazette: “‘I think Mr. Murtha's ethics had to play a role in these results,’ said Melanie Sloan, executive director of the nonpartisan group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, or CREW.’” [Pittsburgh Post Gazette, 11/17/06]
- Star Tribune: “On Tuesday, a nonpartisan, nonprofit watchdog group, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), filed a complaint with the IRS, whose rules say churches are prohibited from ‘directly or indirectly participating in, or intervening in, any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate.’” [Star Tribune, 10/18/06]
- The Hill: “Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), a nonpartisan and nonprofit watchdog group, filed the complaint against the PAC and its Treasurer Robert Higdon, for failing to provide campaign finance reports and for not disclosing contributions made to lawmakers.” [The Hill, 5/19/04]
- Washington Post: “‘The fact remains, Representative Waters abused her office for personal financial gain, and she must be held accountable for that,’ said Melanie Crew, executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, a nonpartisan watchdog group. ‘No PowerPoint presentation by her grandson or anyone else can change that reality.’” [Washington Post, 8/14/10]
Crew Most Corrupt Reports Include Democrats and Republicans: In each of the 5 annual reports on Congressional corruption released by CREW, both Republican and Democratic lawmakers have been criticized. [Crew Most Corrupt Report, 2005; Crew Report, 2006; Crew Report, 2007; Crew Report, 2008; Crew Most Corrupt Report, 2009; Crew Crooked Candidates Report, 2010]
CREW: Organization Dedicated to Accountability Regardless of Party Affiliation: On its website, CREW describes itself as a nonprofit that targets corrupt officials regardless of party: “Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to promoting ethics and accountability in government and public life by targeting government officials -- regardless of party affiliation -- who sacrifice the common good to special interests. CREW advances its mission using a combination of research, litigation and media outreach.” [CREW Website, citizensforethics.org]
Lobbyist: Shhhhh….everybody’s watching.
Shopkeeper: They said Blunt misused his position for the benefit of his family.
Source: CREW Most Corrupt Report, 2005
Blunt Named One of 13 Most Corrupt Members of Congress For “Misuse of his Position for the Benefit of his Family. In 2005, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), named Blunt one of the 13 most corrupt members of Congress. CREW named Blunt because of his alleged “misuse of his position for the benefit of his family.” [CREW Most Corrupt Report, 2005]
Lobbyist: We’re one big family here.
Shopkeeper: Blunt inserted special favors for companies his family lobbied for.
Source: Washington Post, 6/11/03; Wall Street Journal, 4/7/03
Blunt Tried To Push Through Tobacco Legislation Beneficial To Donor Philip Morris, Employer Of Lobbyist Son, Andrew Blunt, And Then-Girlfriend, Lobbyist Abigail Perlman. In the fall of 2002, Rep. Roy Blunt inserted a tobacco provision benefiting Philip Morris directly into the Homeland Security Department bill hours before the legislation was scheduled for final vote. Blunt added the tobacco provision, which cracked down on sales of contraband cigarettes, without informing House leadership or submitting the proposal for normal committee review and debate. After learning of the provision, House Speaker Dennis Hastert had it removed from the proposed language. When reports of the incident surfaced, Blunt was strongly criticized for circumventing legislative procedure to push legislation beneficial to one of his largest donors, Philip Morris. The tobacco company also employed Blunt’s personal relations as lobbyists, including Blunt’s son Andrew Blunt, a lobbyist for Philip Morris in Missouri, and Blunt’s “close personal friend” and suspected romantic interest Abigail Perlman, head of government affairs for Altria Group Inc., Philip Morris’ parent company. [Washington Post, 6/11/03]
- Blunt Instructed Aides To Add Tobacco Provision Hours Before Final Vote. The Washington Post reported that Rep. Roy Blunt “instructed congressional aides to add the tobacco provision to the bill -- then within hours of a final House vote -- even though no one else in leadership supported it or knew he was trying to squeeze it in.” [Washington Post, 6/11/03]
- Washington Post Called It “Highly Unusual” For Congressman To Insert Contentious Provision Without Committee Approval Or Leadership Consent. The Washington Post wrote that “It is highly unusual for a House Republican to insert a last-minute contentious provision that has never gone through a committee, never faced a House vote and never been approved by the speaker or majority leader.” [Washington Post, 6/11/03]
- Blunt: No Regrets About Attempt To Insert Provision Because It Was “In The Pattern Of How We Do Things Here.” In an interview with Roll Call, “Blunt said he did not have any regrets about his actions in November and that it was not unusual for legislative provisions to be added at the last minute. ‘I think it was very much in the pattern of how we do things here,’ he said.” [Roll Call, 6/19/03]
- Speaker of the House Spokesman: Provision Removed Because It Had Not Been Vetted Or Approved By Committee. Explaining why Blunt’s last-minute tobacco provision had been removed before the floor vote, House Speaker Dennis Hastert’s spokesman John Feehery said, "It had not been fully vetted and there was no sign-off from the Judiciary Committee, and that's why it didn't go in the homeland security bill." [Washington Post, 6/12/03]
- Center for Responsive Politics: Blunt Recklessly Disregarded Legislative Process. The Center for Responsive Politics spokesman Steven Weiss called Blunt’s actions “a reckless disregard for the way the legislative process works. He flouted the interest of voters and his leadership.” [Gannett News Service, 6/12/03]
Philip Morris Would Have Benefitted From Blunt’s Provision More Than Any Other Company. According to the Washington Post, “Scruggs said in an interview that the provision was ‘pretty important to us.’ Philip Morris, the nation's largest cigarette producer, would have benefited from the measure more than any other company.” [Washington Post, 6/11/03]
House GOP Expressed Concern About Blunt’s Private Relationship With Tobacco Lobbyist Abigail Perlman, Blunt Declined To Comment. As reported by The Washington Post, “Several Republicans who learned of the November effort have privately expressed concern that Blunt pushed the provision partly because of his personal relationship with Philip Morris lobbyist Abigail Perlman. Blunt, who several Republicans said spends considerable time with Perlman, would not discuss their relationship or whether the two had talked about the provision.” [Washington Post, 6/11/03]
2003: Blunt Attempted To Pass Provision Without Debate That Benefitted UPS, Blunt Donor and Lobbying Client Of Son Andrew Blunt. In April 2003, House Majority Whip Roy Blunt persuaded Sen. Ted Stevens to insert a provision without debate into the Senate Iraq supplemental funding bill that would benefit United Parcel Service Inc., donor to Rep. Blunt’s campaigns and lobbying client of Blunt’s son, Andrew Blunt. The Wall Street Journal reported, “The provision was inserted without debate by Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Ted Stevens (R., Alaska) at the urging of House Majority Whip Roy Blunt (R., Mo.), and establishes a foothold for DHL's rivals to build on in House-Senate negotiations over the nearly $80 billion package.” As reported by CQ Today, “Blunt’s son Andrew is a UPS consultant, and FedEx and UPS have major presences in Missouri.” At the time, FedEx Corp. had donated $9,000 to Rep. Blunt’s campaigns and UPS had donated $15,000 to Rep. Blunt and his affiliated PACs. [Wall Street Journal, 4/7/03; Washington Post, 4/8/03; CQ Today, 4/8/03; AP, 3/10/03; Center For Responsive Politics]
- After the Vote Blunt’s Office Was Pressing House Leaders to Accept the Pro-UPS Amendment and Expand Upon it. The Wall Street Journal wrote, “Mr. Blunt’s office already is pressing House Appropriations leaders to accept the Senate amendment and expand upon it.” [Wall Street Journal, 4/7/03]
- Blunt’s Son Lobbied For UPS From 2002 To March 2009. Rep. Roy Blunt’s son Andrew Blunt lobbied the Missouri General Assembly, Executive Branch, and Judicial Branch for United Parcel Services, Inc. from September 2002 until March 2009. Andrew Blunt registered UPS as an active client September 30, 2002. UPS terminated its contract with Andrew Blunt effective March 2, 2009. [Missouri Ethics Commission, Lobbying Disclosure Database]
- Editorial: Blunt’s Behind-The-Scenes Promotion Of UPS Provision “Carries The Unpleasant Aroma of Peddled Influence.” ANDREW BLUNT would seem an unlikely choice to be a legislative lobbyist for a $30 billion Atlanta-based worldwide express corporation. After all, he is only 27 years old, fresh out of the University of Missouri School of Law, and a newly-minted partner in a new law firm in distant Jefferson City, Mo. But according to The Wall Street Journal, Mr. Blunt had a special attraction for United Parcel Service, Inc., when UPS decided to hire him as a lobbyist. Mr. Blunt's father is the third-ranking Republican in the United States House of Representatives, where -- by the sheerest of coincidences -- UPS had a key piece of legislation pending. What can Brown do for you? It can give your kid a job. And what can you do for Brown? If you're Majority Whip Roy Blunt, R-Stafford, you can quietly urge Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, to secretly amend the $79 billion emergency appropriation for the war in Iraq in a way that benefits U.S. shippers like UPS and FedEx Corp. If you're Roy Blunt, the amendment has the added political benefit of punishing a German-owned rival of UPS. The amendment requires that military cargo be carried only by companies with no more than 25 percent foreign ownership. These rules on foreign ownership of U.S. air carriers date to the 1920s, but have been honored more in the breach than the observance. Mr. Blunt and Mr. Stevens want to enforce them on war-related cargo, in part to punish the German government for refusing to join the U.S.-led war coalition and in part to benefit UPS and FedEx. The Stevens amendment effectively squeezes the German-owned firm DHL Worldwide Express out of billions in war cargo and reconstruction business. Not only that, it threatens DHL's plans to acquire Airborne Express of Seattle, which could create a formidable challenger to the UPS and FedEx stranglehold on all U.S. air-express business. If the Transportation Department were to enforce rules limiting U.S. air carriers to no more than 25 percent foreign ownership, that merger would be dead. This is protectionist legislation that makes no sense in a global economy (even if it does scratch a patriotic itch). It panders to Congress' worst xenophobic instincts, punishes U.S. trading partners and stifles competition. House and Senate conferees should remove Mr. Stevens' amendment. This affair also carries the unpleasant aroma of peddled influence. Andy Blunt is a bright young man who ran big brother Matt's successful race for Missouri Secretary of State in 2000. He might well run Matt Blunt's race for governor next year. He can look forward to a long and successful career in business and politics. He shouldn't need -- or accept -- freebies from Dad's friends. [St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Editorial, 4/9/03]
Lobbyist: It’s the way we work.
Shopkeeper: That doesn’t work for me.
Narrator: The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee is responsible for the content of this advertising.
Visual: Paid for by the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, www.dscc.org. Not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee is responsible for the content of this advertising.