AFTER MONTHS OF SILENCE, SENATORS ASK FOR AN INVESTIGATION AND ANSWERS
by Sharon Rondeau
(May 27, 2010) — Rep. Joe Sestak claimed in February 2010 that someone in the Obama regime had offered him a high-ranking position in exchange for abandoning his primary bid against Sen. Arlen Specter.
In an interview with Larry Kane on the “Voice of Reason” show, Kane asked Sestak if the rumor he had heard regarding the offer of “a high ranking job in the administration” in return for agreeing to withdraw from the Senate race was true. According to Kane, “Sestak looked a little surprised by the question,” but answered “Yes.” Sestak did not elaborate further, according to the report.
Fox News also interviewed Sestak shortly after the Larry Kane broadcast, during which Sestak affirmed his initial statement.
Sestak did not give up on his senatorial ambitions and won the Democrat primary against Specter last week. Specter, who had switched to the Democrat Party last year with support from Obama, had been a senator since 1981 and is finishing his fifth term.
Ironically, before the primary, Sen. Specter had raised the “specter” of “misprision of felony,” or “when you don’t report a crime” on Sestak’s part if his allegations were true and he failed to report it. Sestak is now saying that he answered the initial question, and “”Anything that goes beyond that is for others to talk about.”
Seven Senate Republicans have written a letter to Eric Holder requesting that a Special Prosecutor be appointed to investigate Sestak’s allegations. In March, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs avoided a direct answer to the question. On May 22, 2010, Gibbs stated on “Face the Nation” that “people who have looked into it assure me the conversations were not inappropriate in any way.” However, Gibbs has also stated that the Obama campaign put Obama’s “birth certificate” on the internet, something which the Hawaii Department of Health has refused to corroborate.
The authors of the letter to Holder stated that Sestak repeated his claim about the job offer last weekend on “Face the Nation” and “Meet the Press” and reminded him of a pledge Holder made at his confirmation hearing to be “an independent attorney general.” They stated that Assistant Attorney General Ronald Weich had recently replied to a letter written by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA), who had first requested that a Special Counsel be appointed on the Sestak matter, maintaining that “a special counsel is not needed in this instance.” Issa had requested the Special Counsel on April 21, 2010 and stated that the job offer, if true, was a “crime” and an “impeachable offense.”
Issa has stated that a felony could have been committed. However, Sestak has refused to answer any further questions about the alleged bribe. Senator Richard Durbin (D-IL) has stated that “the onus is on Sestak” to elaborate on the details of the alleged offer.
The signatories to the letter to Holder were Sens. John Cornyn (R-TX), Jeff Sessions (R-AL), Charles Grassley (R-IA), Jon Kyl (R-AZ), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Orrin Hatch (R-UT), and Dr. Tom Coburn (R-OK).
All Obama has said about the matter is that a statement will be coming “shortly.”
Instructions to citizens wishing to file allegations of wrongdoing may do so through the Office of Congressional Ethics here.