“Keep in mind, we had Bill Clinton as president when, in ’94, we lost the House, we lost the Senate, we lost governorships, we lost state houses,” he said. “And so, regardless of what policies they wanted to promote, they didn’t have a working majority to bring change about.”At that point in my life, I was still a Republican. The Neocons and Religious Right hadn't completely suborned the party so I was pretty happy when we took the House because I hadn't realized just how much I was an atypical Republican with my "progressive" social views. But enough wool-gathering, I remember why the Democrats lost the House. And it wasn't because of the Clintons; rather, it has to do with these 1990's scandals:
$719,000 in fines against the DNC for corrupt and illegal campaign financing.
Dan Rostenkowski - Indicted on 17 felony charges - pleaded guilty to two counts of misuse of public funds and sentenced to seventeen months in federal prison.
Melvin Reynolds - Convicted on sexual misconduct and obstruction of justice charges and sentenced to five years in prison.
Lawrence Jack Smith - U.S. Representative from Florida from 1983 to 1993. Sentenced to three months in federal prison for tax evasion.
And, of course, the HOUSE BANKING SCANDAL that Gingrich and his posse exploited. SEVENTY-SEVEN members of the House resigned or lost their seats, MOST OF THEM DEMOCRATS. Here's a list of the 22 worst, as identified by the House Ethics Committee:
Tommy Robinson (Republican-Arkansas) 996 checks/16 months overdue
Robert Mrazek (Democrat-New York) 920/23
Robert Davis (Republican-Michigan) 878/13 ($350,000)
Doug Walgren (Democrat-Pennsylvania) 858/16
Charles Hatcher (Democrat-Georgia) 819/35 ($273,000)
Stephen Solarz (Democrat-New York) 743/30
Charles Hayes (Democrat-Illinois) 716/15
Ronald Coleman (Democrat-Texas) 673/23 ($275,848)
Carl C. Perkins (Democrat-Kentucky) 514/14
Bill Alexander (Democrat-Arkansas) 487/18
William Goodling (Republican-Pennsylvania) 430/9
Edolphus Towns (Democrat-New York) 408/18
Edward Feighan (Democrat-Ohio) 397/8
Harold Ford (Democrat-Tennessee) 388/31 ($552,447)
Mickey Edwards (Republican-Ohio) 386/13 ($54,000)
William Clay (Democrat-Missouri) 328/9
Tony Coelho (Democrat-California) 316/12
John Conyers (Democrat-Michigan) 273/9
Mary Rose Oakar (Democrat-Ohio) 213/18
Joseph Early (Democrat-Massachusetts) 124/13
Doug Bosco (Democrat-California) 124/13
Jim Bates (Democrat-California) 89/9
Democrats win: 18 - 4
Fall out from the Banking Scandal: RESIGNED
Bill Alexander (Democrat-Arkansas)
Albert Bustamante (Democrat-Texas)
Robert W. Davis (Democrat-Michigan)
Edward F. Feighan (Democrat-Ohio)
Charles Hatcher (Democrat-Georgia)
Charles A. Hayes (Democrat-Illinois)
Carroll Hubbard, Jr. (Democrat-Kentucky)
Bill Lowery (Republican-California)
Nicholas Mavroules (Democrat-Massachusetts)
Mary Rose Oakar (Democrat-Ohio)
Carl C. Perkins (Democrat-Kentucky)
Gus Savage (Democrat-Illinois)
Lawrence J. Smith (Democrat-Florida)
Democrats win: 11 - 1
Honestly, I'm stunned a the audacity of the charges which are so reckless as to be deliberate lies. Even more, I feel sorry for the people who fall for these audacious lies. The well-known truth, for those who haven't flushed their brains down the memory hole toilet (or are too young to remember), is that the Democrats lost the House because they were perceived to be about as corrupt then as the Republicans are now.
Gingrich, at that time a masterful, hardball politician came in, promising ETHICS, TERM-LIMTS and a CLEAN GOVERNMENT. As a side-show to those broad campaign promises, Gingrich even introduced his CONTRACT WITH AMERICA (CWA) stunt. And while the CWA didn't actually do anything as it was late to the fray, the Republicans grabbed the House and locked up government in the reaction to the constant Democratic party scandals based on their primary platform of "clean government."