Monday, January 23, 2006

Doolittle Waves Red Flag: "Investigate Me"

John Doolittle's pre-recorded cuppy cake interview with a Sacramento conservative talk show host aired today at 2 pm. I only heard a little of it on my way to an appt. but all I can say is, "What a weenie." Really.

Here's an quickie article from the Sac Bee (Andy Furillo) about Doolittle's first public comments about his relationships and involvement with the likes of DeLay and Abramobb:

U.S. Rep. John Doolittle says he wants the Department of Justice to "come investigate me" so he can clear his name in the Jack Abramoff lobbying and corruption scandal that has swept through Washington, D.C.

Doolittle, a Republican from Roseville, is one of a handful of members of Congress who published reports have linked with Abramoff, the lobbyist who has pleaded guilty to bribery conspiracy and other corruption charges. But in an interview aired Monday on radio station KFBK in Sacramento, Doolittle said he has never been contacted in the two years since the Abramoff controversy first became public. He said he sent a letter to the Department of Justice last Thursday to speed the probe along as far as it would affect him.

"I said, 'Hey, if you're concerned about me, investigate me, because I'd like to get my name cleared," Doolittle said in the interview that was taped Thursday. "This has been hanging over our heads. I've probably had about a million dollars worth of negative publicity here locally, not to mention across the United States, where someone has put my name out there saying I'm one of (those under investigation), but I don't believe that. I think the fact they haven't contacted me should be a pretty good indicator. If there's any truth to that, come investigate me. Come contact me, because I know what the truth is, and I'll come out with a clean record."

Doolittle said he has no plans to return the money Abramoff contributed to his campaign committee, saying "I don't feel the least bit bad" about accepting what his office has characterized as legal contributions.

Doolittle has accepted $4,000 in campaign contributions from Abramoff and at least $140,000 more in contributions from the disgraced lobbyist’s associates and clients since 1999. Doolittle has refused to return any of the money from Abramoff since the lobbyist pleaded guilty earlier this month to conspiracy to bribe public officials and other corruption-related charges.

Doolittle also defended his wife, Julie, whose business records were subpoenaed in the investigation about two years ago. Julie Doolittle is president of a political fundraising company, Sierra Dominion Financial Solutions, that did work for Abramoff between 2002 and March 2004. John Doolittle said his wife was never asked to appear before a grand jury and that she has had only minimal contact with investigators since the subpoena was served.

I think Doolittle's going to be indicted in February, maybe March.

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