The radioactive cash burning a hole in Gordon Smith's finely-tailored pocket

Kari Chisholm FacebookTwitterWebsite

Still no word from Gordon Smith about whether he's going to give up the cash that he personally pocketed from indicted Senator Ted Stevens in 2005 and 2006.

To recap: He's donating to charity the $10,000 his campaign received in 2007. But there's another $10,000 that went to "pay down" his "campaign debt" from 1996 - and since that debt was owed to himself personally, it went directly into Gordon's pocket.

Now, why would Ted Stevens give Gordon Smith $10,000 to pay down a decades-old campaign debt that would just go into Smith's golfing and nice-suits fund?

Let's dig into the details.

On March 2, 2005, Stevens gave Smith $5000 for his 1996 campaign fund.

On October 20, 2005, Smith voted for the Bridge to Nowhere, a Stevens pet project - $200+ million to build a bridge that would serve the fifty people on Gravina Island.

On March 16, 2006, Smith cast the tiebreaking vote to drill for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge - a major priority for Stevens. As I noted on BlueOregon at the time, Smith was hardly just a random Senator in the 51-49 vote. He was a critical player. In the National Journal:

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, said his panel ... is deeply divided over reconciliation, and he cautioned that moderate Sens. Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, and Gordon Smith, R-Ore., hold all the cards. Reconciliation will be decided by "the extent to which I get Snowe and Smith to agree to it," Grassley said.

And then less than two weeks later - on March 28, 2006 - Stevens gave Smith another $5000 for his 1996 campaign fund.

And then, on May 4, 2006, Smith's 1996 campaign fund disbursed $75,000 to Gordon Smith personally - completing the cycle that landed the dirty money fro Stevens in our Senator's pocket.

And of course, predictably, the Oregonian is pretending that all of this didn't really happen. In today's editorial, they even credit Gordon Smith with giving up the $10,000 in campaign cash - but completely fail to mention the $10,000 in personal cash.

If Stevens is "politically radioactive", as the O wrote today, then Gordon Smith is getting radiation poisoning from the nuclear waste in his pocket.

  • SBC (unverified)

    I got an email today from the Smith campaign inviting me to "THE BIG EVENT!" with special guest Arnold Schwarzenegger. It is on Thursday, August 21st at 11:30 AM at the Hilton on SW 6th. Lunch tickets are $1,000, priority seating is $2,500 and photo opportunities start at $10,000.

    Is anyone else thinking what I'm thinking?

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    Oh wow. Thank you, SBC.

    And full disclosure: My firm built, but I speak only for myself.

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    I didn't know you could play golf at the Hilton!

  • genop (unverified)

    10K for a photo with Smith? Now the Terminator - that's a different story. Will we see the fleet of Hummers?

  • backbeat (unverified)

    Nice post Kari. Way to track the dates. SBC, good info....heh heh....perhaps we'll meet on the front line.

  • JTT (unverified)

    Just curious...are the Hilton workers still boycotting? If they are...there shouldn't be any lingering doubt for any union worker in Oregon over what Smith thinks about them and their families. Crossing a picket line is like flipping the bird.

  • SC (unverified)

    I think you'd really enjoy this video of Ted Stevens' wiretapped phone call:

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    Just curious...are the Hilton workers still boycotting?

    No, they came to an agreement fairly recently.

  • edison (unverified)

    Great post! I'm really trying to put on my surprised look, Kari. Seriously. I am. Really.

  • Marian (unverified)
    <h2>Kari, do I have permission to quote and somewhat re-word and condense your already succinct comments,to send to the Oregonian editor? The more we bombard the O with the truth about Smith, the more likely they are to publish letters on the subject.</h2>

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