Photograph: Maxine Waters Poverty Pimp Posters in front of famous Randy’s Donuts in Los Angeles
“Over the last year, and due to the focus of House Republicans on so-called ‘Muslim radicalization,’ we have seen politicians and pundits attacking the Islamic faith as a security threat to the United States,” Congresswoman Maxine Waters said. “Across the country, these people are exploiting fear and trying to convince state legislatures that the state adoption of Sharia tenants is the strategy extremists are using to transform the United States into an Islamic country.”
In the midst of a national financial catastrophe, Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) used her position as a senior member of Congress and member of the House Financial Services Committee to prevail upon Treasury officials to meet with OneUnited Bank. She never disclosed that her husband held stock in the bank. This outrageous conduct has led Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) to include the congresswoman as one of the Most Corrupt Members of Congress.
“By contacting then-Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson to request a meeting, allegedly for a group of minority-owned banks, but then arranging for only one bank – OneUnited, in which she had a financial interest – to attend, Rep. Waters violated House conflict of interest rules,” said CREW Executive Director Melanie Sloan.
“While CREW has named many Republicans as being corrupt, the fact that they selected Waters is evidence of the dislike some progressives have towards the shoot-from-the-hip rabble-rouser,” said political watchdog Lamar Jenkins, a former police official.
Around the same time Rep. Waters asked the Treasury Department to hold the initial meeting, Rep. Waters spoke to Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) about OneUnited, telling him that her husband previously had served on the board. Rep. Frank advised her to stay out of matters related to the bank. Nevertheless, Rep. Waters’ chief of staff and grandson, Mikael Moore, continued to actively assist OneUnited representatives in their quest to receive bailout funds, and worked to craft legislation authorizing Treasury to grant OneUnited’s request.
Rep. Waters was scheduled for an ethics trial on November 29, 2010, but the House Ethics Committee postponed the hearing. Inconsistent reports have emerged suggesting both potential new evidence and serious misconduct by two of the committee’s attorneys and improper conduct by committee members. In July 2011, the committee hired respected D.C attorney Billy Martin as outside counsel to investigate both the case against Rep. Waters and the committee itself.
“The ethics committee has handled the case against Rep. Waters with the maturity of school children,” said Ms. Sloan. “Happily, adult supervision in the form of Mr. Martin has been brought in to clean up the mess.”
This is the 7th edition of the CREW’S Most Corrupt Report, an annual look at a bipartisan collection of Washington’s worst. This year’s list includes seven Democrats, and 12 Republicans. Five are repeat offenders. Since 2005, CREW has named 70 members of Congress to the list, 32 of whom are no longer in office.
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) uses aggressive legal action, in-depth research, and bold communications to reduce the influence of money in politics and help foster a government that is ethical and accountable. We highlight abuses, change behavior, and lay the groundwork for new policies and approaches that encourage public officials to work for the benefit of the people, not powerful interests, in accordance with the principles of ethical government the founders set out in the Constitution.