March 11th, 2010
By JAKE SHERMAN, Politico
Obama and Co. know all about bribes
The top Republican on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee says the Obama administration may have broken the law by offering Rep. Joe Sestak (D-Pa.) a job in order to persuade him not to mount a primary challenge against Sen. Arlen Specter.
Sestak has said that the administration offered him a high-ranking government job if he’d stay out of the race. White House press secretary Robert Gibbs has been asked repeatedly about the accusation in recent weeks but so far has neither confirmed nor denied that a job was offered.
But in a letter to White House general counsel Robert Bauer Wednesday, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) said that, if Sestak’s allegation is true, administration officials may have violated a federal statute which makes it a crime for a government employee to use his authority “for the purpose of interfering with, or affecting, the nomination or the election of any candidate” for certain offices, including Senate seats.
“While the White House may think this is politics as usual, what is spectacularly unusual is when a candidate — a U.S. congressman no less — freely acknowledges such a proposal,” Issa wrote. “Almost always candidates keep quiet about such deals, and for good reason — they are against the law.”