Friday :: Dec 9, 2005

Another Abramoff Associate Agrees To Roll Over


by Steve

The noose tightens:

Adam Kidan, a longtime confidant of Abramoff's, has agreed to testify against Abramoff in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., next month when he is to face trial on fraud and conspiracy charges in connection with their purchase of a fleet of Florida casino boats. A Kidan plea would tie Abramoff's legal troubles in Florida more closely to the Washington investigation into his lobbying practices, pressuring Abramoff to reach a deal of his own that could implicate members of Congress and other government officials, lawyers involved in the case said.
"Adam will testify against Abramoff and Ney if he is given an opportunity to do so," said Joseph Conway, an attorney for Kidan.
Neal Sonnett, a Florida lawyer representing Abramoff in the SunCruz case, declined to say whether his client is in plea negotiations with the government. Andrew Blum, a spokesman for Abramoff's Washington attorneys, also declined to comment on whether plea negotiations are underway.

Which means that plea negotiations are underway, and that Abramoff will be rolling over before his January 9th court date.

Prosecutors have told Ney they are preparing a possible bribery indictment against him over official acts that benefited clients of Abramoff. Ney inserted comments in the Congressional Record at Scanlon's request praising Kidan and castigating the reputation of SunCruz's then-owner, Konstantinos "Gus" Boulis, during contentious purchase negotiations. Six weeks ago, prosecutors got agreements from Abramoff, Kidan, Ney and former Ney aide Neil Volz to suspend the five-year statute of limitations while the investigation continues.

And even when the inept Liddy Dole NRSC slime machine kicks in soon, by trying to spin the notion that the relatively few Democrats who got money from Abramoff are just as guilty as DeLay, Ney, and the perhaps dozens of GOP members and Senators, the real question is what the GOP did for that money. Just because Abramoff gave money to lots of people isn’t the issue. The real issue is that the GOP took bribes from Abramoff and other lobbyists through the K Street Project, and then used their positions of authority over the committees and legislative process to reward those who paid them. It’s kind of hard to make a “pay for play” argument against Democrats when they haven’t have the reins of power or means to control the agenda or machinery. It’s one of those rare times when it will be good for the Democrats to show exactly how impotent they have been the last decade, and how omnipotent the GOP has been through its one-party control of Congress, the White House, and for these purposes K Street.

Steve :: 9:37 AM :: Comments (2) :: TrackBack (0) :: Digg It!