Archive for the ‘Murtha’ Category

Murtha Award Ignites Veterans in Protest

March 27, 2009

In one of his last moves before leaving office March 13, then-Navy Secretary Donald Winter quietly awarded 19-term Democratic congressman John Murtha (Pa.) with the service’s highest civilian honor.

By Christian Lowe
Military.com

Citing Murtha’s “courageous leadership, vision, and loyalty to the men and women of the Department of the Navy,” Winter presented the influential chairman of the House Appropriations Committee’s defense panel with the Navy’s Distinguished Public Service Award, an honor bestowed in “those extraordinary cases where individuals have demonstrated exceptionally outstanding service of substantial and long term benefit to the Navy, Marine Corps, or the Department of the Navy as a whole,” a Murtha release stated.

The award generated little publicity when it was given to Murtha in early March, but as news of the honor trickled out, some veterans groups ignited a firestorm of protest.

Poll: Should the Navy reconsider Murtha’s award

The primary reason for their ire stems from the congressman’s statements in May, 2006, that a squad of Marines who responded to an IED ambush and short firefight in Haditha, Iraq, rampaged through the village, murdering civilians “in cold blood.”

Murtha made those comments in the heat of the 2006 congressional mid-term election campaign, in a move some political analysts saw as an attempt to stoke the anti-war vote for a Democratic takeover of the House. The former Marine and distinguished Vietnam veteran continued his accusations in follow-up media appearances before an official Pentagon and Naval Criminal Investigative Service investigation had been completed.

When the dust settled more than two years later, six of the eight Marines and Sailors accused of crimes in the Haditha incident had their cases dismissed, one was found not guilty and the last has been continued indefinitely.

The Navy did not respond to a request for comment on the award or the backlash from veterans groups by post time.

Murtha has refused to recant his accusations or or apologize to the Marines he accused of war crimes….

Read the rest:
http://www.military.com/news/article/
March-2009/murtha-award-sparks-v
et-outrage.html

Rep. Murtha Dogged By Questions About Earmark Use, Ethics

March 24, 2009

Rep. John Murtha celebrated his 35th anniversary as a congressman by getting an early start on his next campaign, staging an invitation-only fundraising luncheon for dozens of lobbyists and defense contractors at the private Army-Navy Country Club in Arlington, Va. 

AP

But last month’s event, with tickets starting at $1,400, was missing one longtime friend: Paul Magliocchetti, the founder of a lobbying firm that over the past two decades has been one of Murtha’s biggest sources of campaign donations. 

Magliocchetti was absent because of what had happened three months earlier. At 7:30 one evening shortly after Thanksgiving, the FBI raided his lobbying firm, carting off records of the firm’s political action committee and files of some of its lobbyists. 

The work of those lobbyists took them often to Murtha’s Capitol Hill office, as well as those of fellow Democrats Peter Visclosky of Indiana, Jim Moran of Virginia and others on the defense appropriations subcommittee that Murtha chairs. The FBI says the investigation is continuing, highlighting the close tie between special-interest spending provisions known as earmarks and the raising of campaign cash. 

For Murtha, Visclosky and Moran the practice has paved the way for their congressional careers. In 2007 and 2008, the three directed $137 million to defense contractors who were paying Magliocchetti’s PMA Group to get them government business. That kind of clout put the midsized 33-lobbyist firm into the big leagues, ranking it in the top 10 in billings among Washington lobbying shops. 

At the same time, the three lawmakers received huge amounts of political donations from PMA lobbyists and their clients. Murtha has collected $2.37 million in campaign contributions from PMA’s lobbyists and the companies it has represented since 1989, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, which tracks political money. Visclosky has collected $1.36 million; Moran, $997,348. 

Read the rest:
http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2
009/03/23/rep-murtha-dogged-que
stions-earmark-use/

Michelle:
http://michellemalkin.com/2009
/03/24/dont-honor-john-murtha/