November 3, 2005
While I've linked to plenty of stories about the Delay and Scooter indictments, the real mother of all GOP scandals revolves around a guy named Jack Abramoff. He's a super-lobbyist with all kinds of connections to the highest levels of the conservative movement and the GOP. He's the guy that got things done. Who has Senior White House Staff and Congressional Chairmen and cabinet secretaries on speed dial. He is also deeply, amazingly and completely corrupt. Already under indictment in Florida for business dealings there, he is now at the center of a scandal to bilk Indian tribes over gambling. Basically the scam worked like this: Abramoff promised to help a tribe that already had gambling to prevent other tribes from opening casinos. He would do this with his contacts at Department of Interior (which oversees Indian Affairs) and by getting Christian Conservative groups fired up against gambling. In exchange the tribe with the existing casino gives millions of dollars to conservative groups that work with Abramoff. You can read all the dirty dealings in Salon. This is good old fashion political corruption pay for play with the added fun of conservative Christian groups fighting one casino on behalf of another.