Boxer Tied to Dubious Waters Cash-for-Endorsement Scheme

Capitol Confidential
BigGovernment.com
9/7/2010

Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Chair of the Senate Ethics Committee, has paid some $30,000 since 2004 for the endorsement of embattled Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) in the context of a scheme that critics charge is unethical and amounts to Waters using her political station to benefit her family members.

According to the Washington Times, Waters “has turned political endorsements into a family business, using federal election laws to charge California candidates and political causes to include their names as her personal picks on a sample ballot, or ‘slate mailer,’ she sends to as many as 200,000 South Central Los Angeles voters.”

The slate mailer business, it turns out, is run by Waters’ daughter, Karen, via her public relations firm.  Records show that Karen Waters’ firm has been paid more than $350,000 since 2004, and has billed a further $82,000 since California’s June primary, for its services in this regard.

It is a scheme that has been criticized by good governance groups including the Sunlight Foundation and Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW).

The Sunlight Foundation, in a blog post last month, equated the scheme to Waters “selling” her endorsement and noted that the amounts of money being paid to Waters’ own campaign committee in exchange for her endorsement often exceed the federal limit applicable to campaign donations.

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) meanwhile cited Waters as one of the most corrupt members of Congress in both 2005 and 2006 for operating the scheme.  In both years, CREW noted that Waters’ “ethics issues stem from the exercise of [her] power to financially benefit her daughter, husband and son.”  The 2005 rating placed Waters in the company of figures like former Reps. Randy “Duke” Cunningham and Bob Ney—both subsequently convicted of corruption-related offenses—and was directly connected to the operation of the political endorsement scheme.

Critics charge that Boxer has actively aided and abetted this scheme, both in the context of her 2004 and 2010 re-election campaigns.

In 2004, Boxer paid $25,000 for Waters’ endorsement.  But ahead of this year’s California primary—in which Boxer faced no serious competition– and when it was well-known that Waters was under investigation by the House Ethics Committee, Boxer paid Waters $5,000 for her backing.  It is this later payment that those monitoring Waters’ ethical woes say could act as an anchor tied to Boxer’s ankle, as she heads towards November.

Read the rest at BigGovernment.

Read also at New Zeal, “Red Maxine Waters”

Maxine Waters is a far left Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives, representing the 35th district of California.

In the news recently over allegations of corruption, Maxine Waters, if the media was doing its job, should be equally well known for her socialist connections.

Waters has consistently attempted to present herself as a mainstream politician. However the facts tell a different story.

In May 1992 Waters put her name to a supplement in the Communist Party‘s newspaper, the People’s Weekly World which called for readers to “support our continuing struggle for justice and dignity.” Virtually all other signatories were known Communist Party members or supporters…

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