Maxine Waters – Obama’s and Democrats’ Worst Nightmare?
“I’m not afraid of anybody,” Maxine Waters told constituents in Los Angeles, not backing down from comments made about President Obama earlier in the week. “This is a tough game. You can’t be intimidated. You can’t be frightened. And as far as I’m concerned – the tea party can go straight to hell.” So much for civility in politics, for which Obama has called.
Speaking at the Congressional Black Caucus Jobs Initiative in Detroit, Waters criticized Obama for spending too much time in white rural communities and not focusing enough on the black urban neighborhoods where the unemployment rate is about 16%. “Our people are hurting,” said Waters. “The unemployment is unconscionable; we don’t know what the strategy is. We don’t know why on this trip that he’s in the United States, not in any black communities, we don’t know that.” Speaking at a job fair in Atlanta on Thursday, Waters says the president needs to bring his bus tour to the black communities as well as the rural communities, and that he needs to step in and take action to reverse the economic slide. “We want him to use that bully pulpit to get those banks in there who have profits that they are holding onto, and lend that money in our communities, to our small businesses that create jobs,” said Waters. She continued that there was rising unhappiness among African Americans with Obama. “There is a growing frustration in this country and in minority communities because the unemployment rates are so high.” “The president is going to have to fight and he is going to have to fight hard,” Waters said. She continued, “We didn’t raise any revenue and they didn’t close any tax loopholes. I believe the Democratic Party and the president of the United States should not have backed down. We should have made them walk the plank.” Waters also expressed frustration with the nation’s high unemployment rate, and she pointed out that Obama did not visit any African American communities during his recent three-day Midwest tour to highlight economic issues.
Speaking at Wayne State Community College in Detroit, Rep. Maxine Waters, a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, says the group is “getting tired” of making excuses for President Barack Obama. Said Waters, “Let me tell you why. We don’t put pressure on the president because ya’ll love the president. You love the president. You’re very proud to have a black man – first time in the history of the United States of America. If we go after the president too hard, you’re going after us.” “The Congressional Black Caucus loves the president too. We’re supportive of the president, but we’re getting tired, ya’ll. We’re getting tired. And so, what we want to do is, we want to give the president every opportunity to show what he can do and what he’s prepared to lead on. We want to give him every opportunity, but our people are hurting. The unemployment is unconscionable. We don’t know what the strategy is. We don’t know why on this trip that he’s in the United States now, he’s not in any black community. We don’t know that.” “All I’m saying to you is, we’re politicians. We’re elected officials. We are trying to do the right thing and the best thing. When you let us know it is time to let go, we’ll let go.”
From Rich Mitchell at CDN, we have another quote from Waters: “Yesterday, another liberal congressional Representative, Maxine Waters (D-CA) stated that she wanted to see health care reform critics investigated. She used terms like “Tea Bagger” and “Birther” to lump all of Obama’s critics together using belittling terms.”
Maxine Waters “has been under investigation by the House Ethics Committee for allegations that she helped steer government money to a bank in which her husband owned shares.” Waters is being charged with helping to steer more than $12 million in federal bailout funds to OneUnited, a bank in which her husband is an officer and in which he has a substantial interest.
Waters was supposed to have faced trial for ethics violations last year (2010), but the trial was suddenly delayed until after the November 2010 election. She is seeking to have the case dismissed and is threatening legal action against the committee as well. Waters is calling for the House Ethics Committee to dismiss the long-running case against her, claiming she can’t get fair treatment from the secretive panel in the wake of allegations that staffers improperly shared information in an investigation into her finances.
When Democrats controlled the House of Representatives, House Ethics Committee Chairman Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) started meddling in the Waters investigation process. Not only did Lofgren fail to issue subpoenas for records related to the scandal, but she also delayed the ethics committee hearing after doing everything in her power to undermine the professional committee staff leading the investigation. And, as if that were not enough, Lofgren then improperly fired two attorneys working on the investigation. Blake Chisam, the former staff director of the House Ethics Committee accused two top committee lawyers last year of secretly communicating with Republicans on the panel regarding the investigations of Democratic Reps. Maxine Waters and Charles Rangel. Chisam wrote in a memo to then-chairwoman Zoe Lofgren that attorneys Morgan Kim and Stacy Sovereign improperly shared information in the Rangel case with Republicans on the committee – a move that “would have so tainted the proceedings that there would have been no option but to move to dismiss.” The Ethics Committee places strict limits on the sharing of evidence during “trials” for lawmakers; committee members act as prosecutors and lawmakers play the role of a jury.
The seemingly endless ethics investigation of Waters may finally be heading to an end. The House Ethics Committee has commissioned an outside lawyer to examine the conduct of committee staffers who allegedly violated her rights by leaking investigative information to a Republican committee member. (Can anyone say, “Delay Tactic?”) From Daniel at CDN, we learn, “While it is quite obvious that our government’s legislative bodies need rules and regulations under which to operate, the House Ethics Committee of today seems to be lacking … ethics.” He references an article in The Hill, which says, “The leading Republican and Democrat on the House ethics committee are debating whether to hire outside counsel to handle the investigation of Rep. Maxine Waters.”
Citing “gross misconduct,” the lawyer representing Democratic Congresswoman Maxine Waters is asking the House Ethics Committee to dismiss all charges against his client. “Based on the facts of the case and the record of committee misconduct, the only remedy that vindicates the principals of the quasi-judicial functions of the committee is immediate dismissal with prejudice. No other remedy exists to cure this misconduct,” Stanley Brand, Waters’ attorney wrote.
In July, 2010, Rep. Maxine Waters was accused of violating three House of Representatives rules – one that requires its members to “behave at all times in a manner that shall reflect creditably on the House,” a second that prohibits lawmakers from using their influence for personal benefit, and a third forbidding the dispensing of favors. On the “dispensing of favors” charge, Waters’ chief of staff, Mikael Moore, her grandson, worked to help OneUnited Bank, even as Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, urged Waters to “stay out of it” because of her husband’s ties to the bank. OneUnited received $12 million in federal bailout funds in December 2008. Waters’ husband, Sidney Williams, served on the OneUnited board, and stock in the bank when Waters set up a September 2008 meeting between Treasury Department officials and representatives of minority-owned banks.
On August 13, 2010, Rep. Maxine Waters blamed the Bush administration for her ethics problems. “The question at this point should not be why I called Secretary Paulson, but why I had to,” she said. “The question at this point should be why a trade association representing over 100 minority banks could not get a meeting at the height of the crisis.” But the House ethics committee says in its report of charges that when the meeting was held, the officers of only one bank came – OneUnited.
The chief of staff and press secretary to Rep. Maxine Waters is Mikael Moore, her grandson. Call it nepotism if you will, but according to House rules, while members are forbidden from hiring their children, there is no rule against grandchildren.
So now, how much longer are Los Angeles voters going to reelect her? How much longer is this embarrassment, this ethically challenged person, this nepotism practicer, this TARP Fund grabber, this Congressional joke, the loud mouth, this racist, going to be in the House of Representatives? But the Ethics Committee is not a court of law, so she has not “had her day in court” and we must presume her innocent until proven guilty. Suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuure!
But that’s just my opinion.