by Scoobie Davis
Mr. Freedom Fries Being Put Through Slice-and-Dice Machine
Even though when the Republicans took power in the House in 1994, GOP leaders Newt Gingrich and Tom DeLay did get along, there was one member of the class of '94, Bob Ney (R-Ohio) who used both Gingrich and DeLay as role models. The problem is that Ney modeled the worse elements of both. Like Gingrich, Ney gave Wife Number One the heave-ho once he became a big shot member of Congress.
Like DeLay, Ney is corrupt--he's done some dirty dealing with DeLay crony Jack Abramoff. Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW)is looking for a member of Congress to forward their ethics complaint to the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct. The Justice Department is investigating him. I'm no fan of Lisa Myers but it's good to see that she's taking on Ney.
Can Ney be ousted from Congress? If he's indicted, I think he's dead meat. Ney lucked out in 1994 when Democrat Douglas Applegate retired; the strongest candidate Robert Burch was running for governor that year, leaving Ney to run against a weaker Democratic candidate. One of the problems is the changes in his district from reapportionment; many of the Democratic-leaning counties along the Ohio River are no longer in his district (Most of Democratic Belmont County where Ney's home is in another district--except for a tiny area that includes Ney's hometown). However, Ney is very vulnerable.
DeLay was effective because he kept a low profile (and the mainstream media didn't do their job); now that Americans know what a scary, venal, wing-nut he is, he's a big liability. It would great for Ney to be a collateral damage from the upcoming DeLay Implosion.