Monday, January 16, 2006

Bob Ney Steps Down as House Administration Chairman

Rep. Bob Ney (R-Ohio) has temporarily stepped down as Chairman as the small but significant House Adminstartion Committee because he claimed the current investigation of him is distracting other lawmakers on the committee and preventing the committee from doing its tasks. While small and not capturing much news coverage, the House Administration Commitee is highly significant for members of Congress themselves. The Committee often deals with issues of parking, transportation, food services at the Capitol Building, staffing salaries, office space alotted, and other various concerns that directly impact federal lawmakers. Despite this resignation, Ney maintains his innocence and claims he has done nothing wrong. According to him, this decision was simply made because he felt he was a personal distraction to the management of the committee.

Back home in Ohio, St. Sen. Charlie Wilson (D-Bridgeport) (himself a US House candidate to replace Ted Strickland) was very cautious in verbally indicting Ney as corrupt and said that, "I don't believe we should pass judgment until he's had his day. I think we should wait and see when he has his day in court what he can say to defend himself."

Commentary: Not to diminish the possible severity of the alleged acts committed by "Representative No. 1" in the Abramoff plea agreement but newspaper columnist Colin McNickle wrote a very interesting and highly personal take on Bob Ney's political career in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

One remarkable story was Ney's promise to drive the columnist to a job interview in Columbus while Ney was a State Senator but something came up yet Ney still offered his car to the columnist for the interview, since he had made a promise. A strikigly different take on a man that many have come to loathe in the national media recently.


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