Key senator in hot water?


Ranking Member of the Senate Commerce Committee Ted Stevens (R-AK) has some extracurricular problems back in his home state. Details of a corruption scandal has been coming out involving an Alaska-based energy company and some state politicians. One of those implicated was Stevens' son Ben, who was president of the Alaska State Senate. Now word is coming out that there may be a problem with some work done on Ted Stevens' house back in 2002. The energy company is Veco Corporation, and some of its key execs have pleaded guilty to bribery in connection with members of the state legislature. In Stevens case, Veco allegedly oversaw improvements to Stevens' private home in Alaska, bringing in local contractors to actually do the work.

Investigators want to know why a company with a rap sheet, that is not in any way connected to the home improvement business was handling such a transaction for Stevens. One of the contractors spoke to the local media about the situation awhile back, but now nobody is talking, other than Stevens' brief confirmation that he has been instructed by the FBI to preserve certain documents.

RBR observation: It hasn't been a very good couple of years for some of the Republicans on Commerce. Conrad Burns (R-MT) and George Allen (R-VA) both lost very close elections last November. Burns was brought down, in part, by ties to Jack Abramoff, and Allen had his legendary YouTube moment which if nothing else taught politicians to be on their guard and on their best behavior 24/7. Will Stevens be next? Stay tuned.