Non-Partisan 'Watchdogs'? Ha!

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Annie, Jun 22, 2004.

  1. Annie

    Annie Diamond Member

    Nov 22, 2003
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    By Michelle Malkin · June 22, 2004 02:51 PM
    How many times have you read a story about ethics or campaign finance that quotes "non-partisan" groups such as the Center for Responsive Politics, Common Cause, Democracy 21, Public Citizen and the Center for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington? (A Nexis search I just ran for "non-partisan Center for Responsive Politics" brings up 421 hits.)

    Well, Roll Call unmasks the partisan stripes (or rather, spots) of these wobbly watchdogs. For those who don't have subscriptions, here's a snippet:

    Since Republicans took control of Congress a decade ago, leading government watchdog groups have relentlessly pursued allegations of ethics broaches and fundraising abuses against GOP leaders ranging from retiring Rep. Nick Smith of Michigan to Majority Leader Tom DeLay of Texas.
    But the groups have gone comparatively easy on Democrats - and a recent look through campaign-finance figures shows that officials of five leading money-in-politics watchdogs have given money almost exclusively to Democrats since 1994, when Republicans took over Congress.

    According to the nonpartisan PoliticalMoneyLine, officials at Common Cause, the Center for Responsive Politics, Democracy 21, Public Citizen and the Center for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington have donated a total of $62,000 to Democrats over the past decade.

    During the same period, the watchdog groups have given just $2,000 to Republicans...Said one House GOP leadership aide: "It seems 'nonpartisan watchdog' is Latin for 'active Democrat contributor.' Why they continue to get quoted as independent observers blows my mind."

    There's more the story could have added. According to one Hill source, nearly all of these watchdog groups are funded with money from the hyper-partisan Bush-basher George Soros: Public Campaign, $1.2 million; Public Citizen, $100,000; Common Cause, $600,000; Democracy 21, $250,000.

    Moreover, a board member for the Center for Responsive Politics gave money to one of Nancy Pelosi's Leadership PACs during the same time they were silent about her ethically-challenged practice of operating two leadership PACs. And another board member for the Center for Responsive gave money to corruptocrats Rep. Dan Rostenkowski and Sen. Carol Mosely-Braun.

    So, who's watching the watchdogs? Daniel Okrent ( and Michael Getler (, fetch!

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