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October 16, 2005

How The Republican Machine Works

-- by Dave Johnson

Learn how Republican "government" works. From today's How a Lobbyist Stacked the Deck:

The eLottery money went first to ["Conservative Movement" leader Grover] Norquist's foundation, Americans for Tax Reform (ATR), and then through a second group in Virginia Beach called the Faith and Family Alliance, before it reached [Former Christian Coalition leader Ralph] Reed's company, Century Strategies. Norquist's group retained a share of the money as it passed through.

"I have 3 checks from elot: (1) 2 checks for $80K payable to ATR and (2) 1 check to TVC for $25K," [Republican lobbyist & Tom DeLay associate Jack] Abramoff's assistant Susan Ralston e-mailed him on June 22, 2000. "Let me know exactly what to do next. Send to Grover? Send to Rev. Lou?" [Lou Sheldon, head of the anti-Gay Traditional Values Coalition]

Minutes later Abramoff responded, saying that the check for Sheldon's group should be sent directly to Sheldon, but that the checks for Norquist required special instructions: "Call Grover, tell him I am in Michigan and that I have two checks for him totaling 160 and need a check back for Faith and Family for $150K."

According to the e-mails, Reed provided the name and address where Norquist was supposed to send the money: to Robin Vanderwall at a location in Virginia Beach.

Vanderwall was director of the Faith and Family Alliance, a political advocacy group that was founded by two of Reed's colleagues and then turned over to Vanderwall, Vanderwall said and records show.

Vanderwall, a former Regent University Law School student and Republican operative, was later convicted of soliciting sex with minors via the Internet and is serving a seven-year term in Virginia state prison.

In a telephone interview, Vanderwall said that in July 2000 he was called by Reed's firm, Century Strategies, alerting him that he would be receiving a package. When it came, it contained a check payable to Vanderwall's group for $150,000 from Americans for Tax Reform, signed by Norquist. Vanderwall said he followed the instructions from Reed's firm -- depositing the money and then writing a check to Reed's firm for an identical amount.

Susan Ralston is currently Karl Rove's chief assistant. (A side note - Calls that come in to the White House for Rove must be cleared by Ralston through Norquist.) Faith and Family Alliance is a front-group, an empty shell run by a [since-convicted] child molester. A share of the money sticks to Norquist, who in his day job coordinates Republican messaging and decides how to channel money to "conservative movement" organizations.

This article traces only a tiny fraction of the hundred of millions of dollars that flows into the Republican machine each year. Read the entire article to see how this fraction was used. Lots of other familiar names show up in the article.

Posted by Dave Johnson at October 16, 2005 2:25 PM

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Comments

Well Dave, if WaPo bothered to read STF, they could have written this stuff years earlier.

I wonder who funds free market environmentalism
hoo haa

http://commonsblog.org/about_freemkt.php

I don't know, but wouldn't it be a hoot if the liberal bloggers started pumping these guys for cash and proof they are lying creeps

http://robertsarvis.blogspot.com/2005/10/googling-robert-sarvis-honorable.html

Posted by: grannyinsanity [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 16, 2005 11:03 PM

The WaPo should be proud of this type of reporting. Yes, it was definately late, but maybe their staff is finally starting to act like real journalists. There were several activities that appear illegal and indictable. The real outrage is the fact that a lot of the lobbying actions were LEGAL. All campaign finance and lobbying laws need to be rewritten. McCain-Fiengold was a cruel hoax.

Posted by: Marvyt at October 17, 2005 9:43 AM

Maybe ralston should be waterboarded and flipped since she is rove's secretary now

Posted by: Anonymous at October 19, 2005 9:14 AM

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