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Republican National Committee blisters Obama on Johnson resignation. Is Holder next? Obama's Burton slapback

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WASHINGTON--The react From the Republican National Committee on Obama vice presidential vetter Jim Johnson quitting after news surfaced of his sweetheart mortgage and pay deals raised questions about why another vetter, Eric Holder--who played a role in President Clinton granting a controversial pardon to Marc Rich--is "still on his search committee."

Slapped back Obama spokesman Bill Burton, “We don’t need any lectures from a campaign that waited fifteen months to purge the lobbyists from their staff, and only did so because they said it was a ‘perception problem."

Click below for full statements.....

“If Barack Obama is concerned his campaign’s ties to special interests are distracting from his VP search and message, why is Eric Holder still on his search committee? Why is registered federal lobbyist Steve Farber leading the convention for Obama’s supposedly ‘lobbyist-free’ campaign? Obama’s hypocritical attacks show he can’t stand up to his own standard – and that he just isn’t ready to make change.” – Alex Conant, RNC Spokesman


RNC Research

Johnson Is A Bundler For Obama’s Presidential Campaign And Has Committed To Raising $100,000 To $200,000. (Obama For America Website, www.barackobama.com, Accessed 5/19/08)

Eric Holder Was Involved In Sweetheart Deal Which Granted Fugitive Marc Rich A Controversial Pardon From Outgoing President Bill Clinton:

"As Deputy Attorney General, Holder Was The Key Person Who Made The Pardon Of Marc Rich Possible In The Final Hours Of The Clinton Presidency." (Dick Morris and Eileen McGann, Op-Ed, "Obama's VP Search Mistake," New York Post, 6/5/08)

Rich Was Under Charges Of Wire Fraud, Tax Fraud, And Illegal Trading With Iran. "[M]arc Rich, the fugitive billionaire who renounced his U.S. citizenship and moved to Switzerland to avoid prosecution for racketeering, wire fraud, 51 counts of tax fraud, evading $48 million in taxes, and engaging in illegal trades with Iran in violation of the U.S. embargo following the 1979-80 hostage crisis." (Dick Morris and Eileen McGann, Op-Ed, "Obama's VP Search Mistake," New York Post, 6/5/08)

To Obtain A Pardon, Rich Retained Former White House Counsel Jack Quinn, Who Circumvented Formal Pardon Application Procedures. "[R]ich wanted a pardon and he retained Jack Quinn, former counsel to the president, to lobby his old boss. ... From the start, the Rich lawyers ignored the government's established rules for pardon applications. Instead of making a formal application to the Office of Pardons in the Justice Department, Quinn sent the application directly to the White House in late December of 2007." (Dick Morris and Eileen McGann, Op-Ed, "Obama's VP Search Mistake," New York Post, 6/5/08)

Documents Emerged Which Indicated That Holder Had Recommended Quinn, And "Gave Substantive Advice To Quinn Along The Way." "Two days later, documents in support of the pardon were sent by Jack Quinn to Eric Holder. It was Holder who had originally recommended Quinn to one of Rich's advisers, although he claims that he did not know the identity of the client. And he gave substantive advice to Quinn along the way. According to Quinn's notes that were produced to Congress, Holder told Quinn to take the pardon application 'straight to the White House' because 'the timing is good.' ... When Holder received the Rich materials, he did no independent research to determine their veracity and appears to have barely reviewed them." (Dick Morris and Eileen McGann, Op-Ed, "Obama 's VP Search Mistake," New York Post, 6/5/08)

* Holder Conducted No Independent Research To Scrutinize Quinn's Request On Behalf Of Rich. "When Holder received the Rich materials, he did no independent research to determine their veracity and appears to have barely reviewed them. ... [H]e never took the time to check anything and simply told the White House that he was 'neutral to positive' on the pardons." (Dick Morris and Eileen McGann, Op-Ed, "Obama's VP Search Mistake," New York Post, 6/5/08)

* "Neither Clinton Nor Holder Ever Consulted With The Pardon Attorney." (Dick Morris and Eileen McGann, Op-Ed, "Obama's VP Search Mistake," New York Post, 6/5/08)

"Officials At The U.S. Attorney's Office In New York Were Understandably Infuriated When They Learned About The Pardon And Accused Rich Of Deliberating Bypassing Their Office." (Dick Morris and Eileen McGann, Op-Ed, "Obama's VP Search Mistake," New York Post, 6/5/08)

"In 2002, A Congressional Committee Reported That Holder Was A 'Willing Participant In The Plan To Keep The Justice Department From Knowing About And Opposing' The Rich Pardon." (Dick Morris and Eileen McGann, Op-Ed, "Obama's VP Search Mistake," New York Post, 6/5/08)

Steve Farber, A Top Fundraiser For The Democrat Convention, Is A Prominent Washington Lobbyist:

Steve Farber, Obama’s Selection To Run The Democrat National Convention, Is A Federal Lobbyist. “While Senator Obama ordered the Democratic National Committee last week to stop taking donations from lobbyists, the co-chairman and lead fund-raiser for the host committee for the Denver convention, Steven Farber, is a lawyer and federally registered lobbyist with Brownstein Hyatt Farber & Schreck LLP, a firm with offices in Denver, Washington, and elsewhere.” (Josh Gerstein, “Candidates Clash Over Ties To Lobbyists,” The New York Sun, 6/11/08)

* Farber Is A Founding Partner Of One Of “Washington’s Leading Lobbying Firm.” “One key fund-raiser for the Democratic convention is Steve Farber, a founding partner of one of Washington's leading lobbying firms and a major Democratic donor who has played golf with former President Bill Clinton and raised money for his presidential library.” (Leslie Wayne, “Candidates Forgo Soft Money, But Conventions Rake It In,” The New York Times, 6/7/08)

Farber’s Current And Former Lobbying Clients Include National Association Of Home Builders And United Airlines. (U.S. Senate Office Of Public Records Website, sopr.senate.gov, Accessed 6/11/08)

# # #

from the Obama campaign....

“We don’t need any lectures from a campaign that waited fifteen months to purge the lobbyists from their staff, and only did so because they said it was a ‘perception problem. It’s too bad their campaign is still rife with lobbyist influence and doesn’t see a similar ‘perception problem’ with the man currently running their own vice presidential selection process, a prominent DC lobbyist whose firm has represented Exxon and a top Enron executive, or their campaign chair and John McCain’s top economic adviser Carly Fiorina, who presided over thousands of layoffs at Hewlett Packard while receiving a $21 million severance package and $650,000 in mortgage assistance,” said Obama campaign spokesman Bill Burton.

8 Comments

Do any of this back and forth about who has less skeletons in the closet re-start the American Economy back to being a lender nation (WITH JOBS APLENTY) and not a debtor nation (WITH HIGH UNEMPLOYMENT RATES)?

Repubs and Dems starting to sound like kids fighting over who gets to hold the remote control, and ain't a DAMN THING GOOD on T.V. or NOTHING POSITIVE BEING DONE IN CONGRESS FOR THE AMERICAN PEOPLE!...

It is incredible to find fault in every wrinkle that rears itself in any campaign; it begins to sound like a thoughtless reaction with no substantive merit. I can envision some old fogy who stomps his feet and cusses at any mention of Barack Obama. If Michelle and Barack had dinner and ordered romaine lettuce it would be further evidence of their elitism.

Hello American People!!!

If we all know that Obama was chosen as the "nominee" by the old establishment of the Democratic party represented by Carter, McGovern, Kennedy, Pelosi, the 92-years old senator, Kerry, and others, we can conclude that Obama is really a tool of that old establishment. Therefore, we are looking at the same old kind of "political situations" inside his campaign....

So I ask: is Obama a real agent of change or just a ....fraud???

I do not want to ask if Obama is a real "uniter...."

God Bless America!!!

WHEN YOU HAVE A BORING CANDIDATE LIKE JOHN MCCAIN, YOU WILL
DO THINGS LIKE THIS, IF HE WERE EXCITING AND WINNING THIS WOULDN'T
HAVE BEEN AN ISSUE, BUT HE'S A BORE, SO THEY HAD TIME TO DIG INTO
THIS GENTLEMAN'S PAST!
PRETTY SOON THEY WILL BE ABLE TO TELL US WHERE JIMMY HOFFA IS
BURIED!

THAT'S WHY THEY WANTED THOSE LITTLE TOWNHALL MEETINGS, TO PLAY
GAMES WITH OBAMA, BUT HE DIDN'T FALL FOR IT!
THE GOP HAS NO STRATEGY, BUSH PUT THEM IN THIS TRICK-BAG, AND
THEY HAVE NO WAY OUT, THEY ARE MORE FOCUSED ON WHO OBAMA HAS
WORKING FOR HIM, EVEN IT IS A NON-PAYING POSITION THAN THEIR OWN
CAMPAIGN, IT'S REALLY SAD THAT AMERICANS ARE DECIDING ON WHAT
THEY CAN BUY AT THE GROCERY STORE OR HOW ARE THEY GOING TO WORK,
BY PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION OR PUTTING GAS IN THE CAR, AND THEY ARE
WORRIED ABOUT A GUY THAT GOT A SO-CALLED GOOD MORTGAGE FROM A
MORTGAGE COMPANY THAT OBAMA HAD PUBLICLY REPRIMANDED!
GROW UP GOP, SHOW SOME GUTS, EITHER HELP THE ECONOMY OR CONCEDE
THE ELECTION TO OBAMA!

dear sweet....can you please explain how the house purchase went down when Obama buys a house. Why can't someone get to the buyers and find out if Rezko paid the difference in the purchase of the house making Obama a $300,000 discount and Rezko paying full price....this is no "happen to be there together" situation...plus, Obama then goes to purchase a small piece of the next door Rezko property that his wife bought...how is this possible...I don't have relatives like this or friends who would buy and hold property so I can buy it later down the line....

THE GOP IS GRASPING AT STRAWS, BUT WHEN YOU HAVE A CANDIDATE LIKE
MCCAIN WHAT ELSE CAN YOU DO!

I AGREE!But,WHO is casting the stones?Unfortunately,I think JohnW MCBUSH3 is not Mentally capable to keep up with Obama.So he will continue to ignore the issues and attack.But most people that dislike Obama its because he is "EXOTIC" "MUSLIM" "INEXPERIENCED".
So in other words he is not White and hasnt had enough "DIRT" to find on him.But I Love that about him.I guess im too "LIBERAL".I hear that on a daily basis.As if "LIBERAL" is the worst thing you can be.

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on June 11, 2008 2:51 PM.

Obama makes surprise visit to a Chicago 8th grade graduation ceremony. Pool report was the previous entry in this blog.

Obama at first downplayed vetter Johnson problem. Chicago's Carol Felsenthal new "Clinton in Exile" book looks into Obama veep vetter Holder role in Marc Rich pardon. is the next entry in this blog.

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