Topic: "Ken Meets Jack"
One year before Enron went belly up, Jack Abramoff was introduced to the firm as a potential source of assistance. In an e-mail dated December 19, 2000, the following was presented to Richard Shapiro, Enron's top lobbyist, by a consultant who, conveniently, was on the payroll of both Enron and Jack Abramoff:
"abramoff is arguably the most influential and effective gop lobbyist in congress. i share several clients with him and have yet to see him lose a battle. he also is close to Delay and could help enormously."
The author of this "lower case e-mail" is Ralph Reed, candidate for the Republican nomination for Lieutenant Governor in the State of Georgia. The e-mail resulted in lunches in which Abramoff sat across the table from Enron executives.
No details of the Abramoff-Enron meetings could be found.
This past week, Jared Thomas, the campaign manager for Ralph Reed, disputed the contents of Reed's own e-mail by denying the "shared" clients with Abramoff.
Reed, of course, defeated an Alabama gambling initiative which ended up benefiting an Abramoff client, the Choctaw Indian tribe casinos across the state line in Mississippi. Concomitantly, Reed started an anti-gambling campaign in Texas funded by another Abramoff client, the Coushatta Indian tribe casinos in Louisiana. Reed was compensated, to the tune of millions of dollars, by Abramoff from the clients he represented.
Reed denies knowing that the money was from gambling sources.
Reed has not returned the money.
Frodo reports these events factually. Frodo hopes that Georgia Republicans do nominate Ralph Reed for the Office of Lieutenant Governor. In fact, since Georgia has an "open primary," Frodo plans to cast his own vote for Ralph Reed in the Republican primary. The desired result being Ralph Reed as the Republican candidate supported only by the die-hard bigoted partisan nut-cakes who believe in this piece of dog poop (with appropriate apologies to "Mick," "Fiona," and "Georgia"). Frodo still believes in the wisdom of the voter--but sometimes you just have to maneuver things around a bit.
Ralph Reed, by the way, was not seen at the funeral of Coretta Scott King.