Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Miller Playing the Blame Game

(cross-posted at D-Day)

My friends at the D-Trip passed this along to me:

Congressman Gary Miller (R-CA-42), under scrutiny for a shady land deal and introduction of legislation that benefited campaign supporters and business partners, is now attempting to the blame the cities and counties he represents for his legal and ethical problems.

In a letter sent to newspapers in his district, Gary Miller stated that he was implementing a new office policy: cities and counties seeking federal funding must submit documentation stating that the community would be the sole beneficiary of the project.

This is positively Orwellian. Miller brokers all sorts of side deals with cities and counties in his district which end up personally benefiting him. Then, when he gets caught, he tries to blame the cities and counties which were forced to play ball with him in the first place. Miller forced the city of Monrovia to sell his parcel of land and then claimed eminent domain status to save himself millions in taxes. Changing office policy won't impact that in the least. The cities aren't the problem - Miller is.

More from the Whittier Daily News:

Reacting to what he calls "unfounded allegations in the press that I have used my office to benefit certain individuals or private business," Rep. Gary Miller said Thursday he has adopted a strict new rule for cities or counties who come to him seeking federal aid.

"From this point forward," he wrote in a letter to the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, "any city or county submitting an appropriations request to my office will be required to certify in writing that the request is for the benefit of the community and not the specific benefit of any individual, organization or business entity."

In early 2005, the San Dimas Republican recommended adding three provisions to a transportation bill that would have benefited projects proposed by real estate developer Lewis Operating Corp.

In those same months, Miller, who ran for re-election unopposed, took $8,100 in campaign contributions from top executives at Lewis.

How dare these cities and counties force Miller to enrich his friends! I'm sure this new directive will put a stop to that!

This is my favorite part:

"To avoid even the appearance of impropriety," he wrote, "I have added this new certification requirement to the rigorous review process that is already in place in my office.

"If you have any suggestions as to how these certification requirements might be strengthened or improved, I would certainly appreciate your thoughts."

Who wants to send him some ideas?

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