Is DiFi dirty?

posted at 9:50 am on March 29, 2007 by Bryan

Hmmmm. What was that about the “culture of corruption?”

SEN. Dianne Feinstein has resigned from the Military Construction Appropriations subcommittee. As previously and extensively reviewed in these pages, Feinstein was chairperson and ranking member of MILCON for six years, during which time she had a conflict of interest due to her husband Richard C. Blum’s ownership of two major defense contractors, who were awarded billions of dollars for military construction projects approved by Feinstein.

Feinstein abandoned MILCON as her ethical problems were surfacing in the media, and as it was becoming clear that her subcommittee left grievously wounded veterans to rot while her family was profiting from the occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan. It turns out that Blum also holds large investments in companies that were selling medical equipment and supplies and real estate leases—often without the benefit of competitive bidding—to the Department of Veterans Affairs, even as the system of medical care for veterans collapsed on his wife’s watch.

As of December 2006, according to SEC filings and www.fedspending.org, three corporations in which Blum’s financial entities own a total of $1 billion in stock won considerable favor from the budgets of the Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs:

# Boston Scientific Corporation: $17.8 million for medical equipment and supplies; 85 percent of contracts awarded without benefit of competition.

# Kinetic Concepts Inc.: $12 million, medical equipment and supplies; 28 percent noncompetitively awarded.

# CB Richard Ellis: The Blum-controlled international real estate firm holds congressionally funded contracts to lease office space to the Department of Veterans Affairs. It also is involved in redeveloping military bases turned over to the private sector.

Dr. Rusty has a few questions related to this story, and an observation:

This is genuine news. Political corruption on a scale as big as Duke Cunningham, and the mainstream press is worried about 8 US attorneys losing their jobs in a completely legal hard-ball political axing-session.

The Culture of Corruption has ‘returned’ – bigger and better than ever before!

Actually, the “culture of corruption” never left.

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Guilty.

JammieWearingFool on March 29, 2007 at 9:43 AM

Great find, Bryan.

It’s been awhile since we had a good blogswarm. We’re tanned, rested and ready for a fun one.

Slublog on March 29, 2007 at 9:44 AM

Looks as though this has been going on for awhile, and involves a fourth company, URS. Here’s something else Byrne found:

In May 2001, URS announced the award of “a contract from the University of California at Los Angeles to perform construction-management services for the $150 million replacement project for Santa Monica Hospital.” URS, which designs and sells advanced weaponry, also held a $125 million design and construction contract at UC’s Los Alamos nuclear weapons lab. So URS had substantial interests in UC capital projects when Blum, its principal owner, became a “decider” on construction planning and awarding contracts.

Curioser and curioser…

Slublog on March 29, 2007 at 9:54 AM

Yeah, I read about that on the front page of the New York Times.

While waiting in line at Starbucks.

In Bizarro World.

saint kansas on March 29, 2007 at 9:55 AM

I know the media will avoid this like the plague … but why aren’t the Republicans hollering from the rooftops? Especially while we’re in the midst of the pseudo-attorney “scandal”?

darwin on March 29, 2007 at 9:56 AM

Bryan!
Ha ha! GMTA. I saved that same pic of her you used so that I could use it with whatever I could use it for. Its a great pic and sooooooooo appropo.
Baaaawaaaaaahahahahhahahhahahahahahahahahha!!!!!!!!!!!

auspatriotman on March 29, 2007 at 10:02 AM

URS Corporation has been the beneficiary of quite a bit of federal love over the years. Which makes sense, as they are a large, Halliburton-like provider of large-scale project support and expertise.

But we never hear about Feinstein, Blum and URS. We only hear about Cheney and Halliburton. The major difference here, though, is that URS received large contracts while Blum was on the board of directors (he resigned in Nov. 2005) and was a financial beneficiary as a stock owner. He has since divested.

Slublog on March 29, 2007 at 10:03 AM

I fail to see how anyone is surprised every time this happens. They’re all dirty. Democrat. Republican. They’re all dirty.

Beats the alternative I guess though.

Ringmaster on March 29, 2007 at 10:05 AM

I would be interested to see who else had their faces in the feed trough.

The reason it’s slipped from the head lines is it’s probably a huge black eye for the Dems.

It is interesting how the MSM puts Republicans under the electron microscope, and makes a gigantic story out of a non-issue, while giving Democrats a pass on such grotesque, and flagrant criminality. The MSM would have us believe this isn’t intentional.

Rode Werk on March 29, 2007 at 10:05 AM

If this was a Republican, we’d have a new scandal of the day, and they could rerun all prior ‘scandals’ and compare this one to them. As it’s another Dem scandal, we get the chirping cricket chorus and back to the Anna Nicole story where rumor has it, yes, she’s still dead. More than likely, she’ll get a promotion from this somehow. Look at old Cold Cash. The dirtier you are, that higher you go.

austinnelly on March 29, 2007 at 10:05 AM

Sadly, this probably won’t even be investigated.

CP on March 29, 2007 at 10:15 AM

Give me a break already with this….

This is NOT news!!!! Now…if he once delivered Pizza to Haliburton, well, THAT’S news!!

HarryStar on March 29, 2007 at 10:19 AM

She has a (D) after her name. Obviously the Left will proclaim innocence. Don’t you guys know by now that the first criteria as to whether something is a crime or not is whether an (R) or a (D) follows their name? Remember, they swept into office to end the R “Culture of Corruption”. They didn’t say they didn’t want a piece of the action.

Faith1 on March 29, 2007 at 10:29 AM

I fed it to the drudge site…I think everyone should.

tomas on March 29, 2007 at 10:30 AM

I wonder if DiFi has interests in the paper bag or corn starch bag industry, now that platic is illegal in SF?

dallas94 on March 29, 2007 at 10:31 AM

‘Cold as Ice’ Jefferson, nimwit, backbencher, is still there in congress, on the Fridgedair Committee or something.
Leave him alone…it is all a big misunderstanding.

Now Feinstein, rich, powerful, connected…..somehow I doubt the fifth richest senator is sweating this much.

Limerick on March 29, 2007 at 10:35 AM

I hope the Repubs have the cajones to keep this in the light, but there is one part of this which needs to be tempered. That is the “no-bid” aspect. I learned from Clinton’s chief of Pentagon procurement that the Federal bid process takes three years(at least for the Pentagon). Anything required in less than three years is always no-bid – going to entities who have sucessfully bid in the past. This is why this person was defending Haliburton’s choice in Iraq. (The upshot of a long, amusing story about that situation was that Haliburton’s was actually one of only two possible choices, and that 1-in-2 not even possibly influenced by The Man In The Undisclosed Location).

So turn the kliegs on DiFi, ditch Cold Cash, but let’s make sure the “no-bid” part of this is important.

eeyore on March 29, 2007 at 10:36 AM

The issue is not “no bid” per se, it’s that the no bids went to her husband.

http://www.metroactive.com/feinstein/

As a member of the Military Construction Appropriations subcommittee, Sen. Feinstein voted for appropriations worth billions to her husband’s firms

TheBigOldDog on March 29, 2007 at 10:42 AM

Hell yes she’s dirty…you cant get any muddier than she is.

davy on March 29, 2007 at 10:45 AM

This is the biggest political corruption story I have seen in years! I’m stunned that it is so blatent, yet relatively unknown in the news coverage.

Thank you bloggers, again!

doufree on March 29, 2007 at 10:46 AM

I met her once. I was in 4th grade and we were touring City Hall in San Francisco. She was mayor and was coming down the stairs and was mobbed by a bunch of 4th graders. All I remember is her being uberpissy because she was caught off-guard. I think there was a picture of it and you could see me and my classmates around her legs on the stairs and her head was down, but you couldn’t see her expression. It was priceless.

Nethicus on March 29, 2007 at 10:51 AM

We all should be shouting this as loud as possible and calling for her resignation. She has betrayed the public trust far worse than anything the AG has done. We need investigations and hearings to find out who knew what when and how much did they fleece the tax payer out of?

conservativecaveman on March 29, 2007 at 10:58 AM

Finally…an outing of one of the untouchable CA senators. Let me tell you…I hope this stays in the light for as long as possible.

StoutRepublican on March 29, 2007 at 10:59 AM

I question the timing. This is clearly an effort by Karl Rove to get the focus off the fired attorneys scandal.

Matticus Finch on March 29, 2007 at 11:05 AM

Here’s what Wiki says about CB Richard Ellis

Current members of the board of directors of the corporation are: Richard Blum, Jeffrey Cozad, Patrice Daniels, Thomas Daschle, Bradford Freeman, Michael Kantor(Clinton Sec of Commerce), Frederic Malek, John Nugent, Brett White, Gary L. Wilson, Cal W. Frese Jr., and Ray Wirta.

BohicaTwentyTwo on March 29, 2007 at 11:06 AM

Orange County Register, Sacramento Bee, LAT, SFGATE….KNBC

Limerick on March 29, 2007 at 11:07 AM

weird…..half the message after submit…..

KABC, KRON

all the above bought and paid for…..California will remained focused on what is important and ban plastic bags.

Limerick on March 29, 2007 at 11:08 AM

Bryan, what the feck difference does it make? She’s a democrat. Free pass! ….and they’re pissed Duke C. didn’t get the gas chamber.

james hooker on March 29, 2007 at 11:17 AM

Thye resignation happened back in Jan. Yet this is the first I’ve seen of it. What media bias?

conservativecaveman on March 29, 2007 at 11:19 AM

Bryan – minor things:

Good Lt
asked the question – Dr. Rusty was passed out drunk! Bwaha!

Actually, the “culture of corruption” never left.

That’s why I put ‘returned’ in scare apostrophes, although upon further reading, it probably isn’t entirely clear what I meant there.

I’m a bad monkey.

;-)

Good Lt on March 29, 2007 at 11:20 AM

They’re all crooks. We’d be better off putting 10 year olds in office. Pathetic.

robblefarian on March 29, 2007 at 11:22 AM

“Dirty Di” has kind of a ring, to it, don’t you think?

morganfrost on March 29, 2007 at 11:25 AM

Big deal, nothing will happen, it will be swept under the carpet. The Dems and MSM support it, and the Republicans don’t know how to attack, only defend.

Nothing has happended to Jefferson or Reid, and Feinstein will say she didn’t know, but resigned to keep from any appearance of impropriety. It is the conservative that are making this a bigger issue than it is.

The Republicans, the defensive party, not decisive.

right2bright on March 29, 2007 at 11:37 AM

Sweep it under the carpet??

Hell, I bet she has that post back in a couple of years

Chuck on March 29, 2007 at 11:42 AM

See, the left doesn’t really care about war profiteering – I mean this is actually the Hallibuton scandal that Halliburton never was and what? Crickets. Soros buying up Halliburton and what? Crickets.

As much as the media doesn’t want to touch this because it will illustrate how full of crap they are in their regular reporting – it is quite the embarrassment the Washington Post didn’t hit on this – I mean her resignation? Are they really this incompetent?

Topsecretk9 on March 29, 2007 at 11:43 AM

Nice photo. From Tales from the Crypt? Too bad she didn’t get cosmetic surgery on the hand.

Valiant on March 29, 2007 at 11:48 AM

Wouldn’t it be lovely if DIFI were arrested and frogmarched in ‘cuffs before the cameras off to jail?

Then Arnold could appoint a REPUBLICAN and reverse the Senate majority back to Republicans.

Democrats — America’s TREASON and CORRUPTION party.

georgej on March 29, 2007 at 11:58 AM

I’m just glad the Democrats have lived up to their promise of returning bi-partisanship to the Congress and aren’t wasting tax dollars on one hearing after another trying to catch Republicans committing perjury.

fogw on March 29, 2007 at 12:11 PM

She’s part of the Military Industrial Complex! She’s a war profiteer, same as Bush, Cheney and all the other Republicans. Wait…. she’s a Democrat? Uhm it’s part of the vast right-wing conspiracy!

RW Wacko on March 29, 2007 at 12:15 PM

Darwin,
Why aren’t the Republicans shouting this from the roof tops?
The Republicans are a pathetic, gutless, bunch of shiverring, beaten puppies.
Who is gonna shout about this? Hagel? McCain? Olympia Snow? Arlene Specter?
Wimps, RINOS, cowards all.
The Republicans are curled-up in the fetal position and sucking their thumbs. Someone give them their “blinkies” and turn off the lights.

mountainmanbob on March 29, 2007 at 12:48 PM

Hmmmmmmmmmm…has seanpen weighed in about her soiled and bloodstained panties yet…???…DiFi’s a Dem…haven’t heard any Republican say a word…where’s the outrage…???

areseaoh on March 29, 2007 at 12:54 PM

“Dirty Di” has kind of a ring, to it, don’t you think?

morganfrost on March 29, 2007 at 11:25 AM

Didn’t Michael Jackson once have a song called “Dirty Diana”?

Hey, close enough – one of you computer video experts needs to get hold of the music and some DiFi video and get to work!

thirteen28 on March 29, 2007 at 1:34 PM

what is the chain of responsibility from the military appropriations subcommittee to building 18?

jummy on March 29, 2007 at 1:38 PM

I fed it to the drudge site…I think everyone should.

Try Rush or someone at FNC. This story surfaced last week sometime at FR. I’ve seen nothing since then anywhere.

Connie on March 29, 2007 at 1:41 PM

Nice photo. From Tales from the Crypt? Too bad she didn’t get cosmetic surgery on the hand.

Valiant on March 29, 2007 at 11:48 AM

Naaawww…….. That’s Allen Colmes.

Randy Cunningham is in jail for what?

Michael Savage has been talking about this…….

PinkyBigglesworth on March 29, 2007 at 2:12 PM

Nice find, Bryan. Culture of corruption:

It is interesting how the MSM puts Republicans under the electron microscope, and makes a gigantic story out of a non-issue, while giving Democrats a pass on such grotesque, and flagrant criminality. The MSM would have us believe this isn’t intentional.

Rode Werk on March 29, 2007 at 10:05 AM

Couldn’t have said it better myself. Cleanup Congress, one liberal at a time.

tormod on March 29, 2007 at 2:22 PM

Pot called the kettle what?

Kini on March 29, 2007 at 2:52 PM

Rush was talking about this around 1:30 or so. He didn’t think it will be a story in the MSM either.

Oh well. I guess there’s never a story unless your name is followed by an (R).

BacaDog on March 29, 2007 at 3:00 PM

Oh well. I guess there’s never a story unless your name is followed by an (R).

Well not only is the left cool with their corruption, they just rather not “discuss” their gross war profiteering and shameful conditions of troop facilities by her husbands company and her duties on the very committee to over see those conditions – it’s a 3fer.

Topsecretk9 on March 29, 2007 at 3:09 PM

I know the media will avoid this like the plague … but why aren’t the Republicans hollering from the rooftops? Especially while we’re in the midst of the pseudo-attorney “scandal”?

darwin

Who would listen?

Benaiah on March 29, 2007 at 3:14 PM

Bryan said:

Eeenteresting.

You young pups aren’t old enough to remember that.

dinasour on March 29, 2007 at 3:50 PM

Does anyone remember the Pelosi-Starkist-Delmonte-Kerry connection? Haven’t heard much about that lately. Seems as though SF dhems are not bound by laws.

R D on March 29, 2007 at 3:57 PM

You young pups aren’t old enough to remember that.

I’m old enough to remember seeing it in syndication.

Bryan on March 29, 2007 at 4:02 PM

Boxer is the most ignorant Senator and Feinstein the dirtiest. Am I the only Californian that doesn’t vote for these two c-u-next-tuesdays? And people ask why I want to leave California. Isn’t it obvious?

Andy in Agoura Hills on March 29, 2007 at 4:38 PM

Time for Arnold to step in and run when she resigns from the Senate

Say hello to The Senatorator!!

TallDave on March 29, 2007 at 5:06 PM

Shocking I tell you, shocking!!!

NEMETI IN SYRACUSE on March 29, 2007 at 5:42 PM

Absolute! Outrage! I never want to hear another word about Haliburton from the left again. Ever!

thedecider on March 29, 2007 at 5:57 PM

I question the timing. This is clearly an effort by Karl Rove to get the focus off the fired attorneys scandal.

Matticus Finch on March 29, 2007 at 11:05 AM

You ARE kidding, right?

silenced majority on March 29, 2007 at 6:05 PM

Diane Feinstein is my crooked Senator. I cannot believe she keeps walking aways from all the investigations that have been dropped against her.

When she was Mayor of San Francisco, Feinstein’s net worth was a couple of million. Since, she has been Senator, she is now worth Billions. There have been numerous stories about her and her husband profiting since she was elected Senator.

She made a killing with Global Crossing during the Clinton administration, ala Terry McAuliffe, she sold her stock just before they filed for bankruptcy.

Her Husband was involved with Peter Kwok who has also worked for Li Ka-Shing and the Chinese army during the Clinton administration and they were not prosecuted for importing AK-47′s into San Francisco by her husbands trading company. (Do a google)

This despite her husbands trading company being caught red handed with containers full 400,000 of illegal AK-47 fully automatic Assault Rifles from the red Chinese.I remember the front page pictures of the rifles in our local paper.

This is the biggest dollar amount scandal ever for a Senator and what is the RNC doing to about it?

How do you go from worth sub 2 million dollar worth to multi billionaire after you are elected Senator with no bid contracts by the bucket load and connections to the Red Chinese.

The RNC should calling for hearings and a Justice Department Investigation.

ScottyDog on March 29, 2007 at 6:36 PM

Heh. Foolish conservatives, no liberal will ever face justice. It’s all just a misunderstanding about rules that only apply to you.

Just remember right after the election Brian Ross at ABC said that there were a number of democratic senators 6-8 heavily involved and implicated in the Jack Abramov scandal. To date those senators have not been ID’d or brought to justice. And Ross has never mentioned it again. I wonder why.

Iblis on March 29, 2007 at 6:38 PM

Investigate!

Indict!

Incarcerate!

csdeven on March 29, 2007 at 11:28 PM

Am I the only Californian that doesn’t vote for these two c-u-next-tuesdays? And people ask why I want to leave California. Isn’t it obvious?

Andy in Agoura Hills on March 29, 2007 at 4:38 PM

No, you’re not the only one Andy. However, I don’t want to leave Calif. There’s so much more to it than these two hags. I never voted for her, but I used to respect DF, comparatively with the complete insufferable idiot Boxer is. Lately, even before this revelation, Boxer has lost a good chunk of her mind.

Entelechy on March 29, 2007 at 11:47 PM


Is DiFi dirty?

YES.

Griz on March 30, 2007 at 12:46 AM

Holy crap, that photo freaks me out!

p.v. cornelius on March 30, 2007 at 6:56 AM

is it just me or does that particular photo bear a striking resemblance to Drowning Creek Kennedy?

Pilgrim on March 30, 2007 at 8:07 AM

Heh. Foolish conservatives, no liberal will ever face justice. It’s all just a misunderstanding about rules that only apply to you.

Too sad because it’s too true. How can the Justice Department continually ignore corruption like this, Reid’s real estate, Jefferson’s fridge, Pat Kennedy’s driving Ted Kennedy’s killing, etc.?

What’s even more disturbing is that these felons get elected over and again, usually in landslides. If there is no accountability, it’s because the US electorate doesn’t care. This is not a good sign for the future of our country.

cmay on March 30, 2007 at 10:51 AM

Another shining example of the moral and ethical superiority of the Democrats.

Clap, clap, clap.

G-man on March 30, 2007 at 6:51 PM

Some of us in CA have known about her persistent corruption for decades.

But our press corps is even more evil than the MSM is in general.

How can I call them evil, you ask? What the hell DO you call someone who acts like this, covers up crimes by one party and hysterically persecutes the other, whether or not any crime was committed?

It’s absolutely pathetic. Yes, DiFi should be censured, removed, and probably jailed and forced to pay restitution.

But I would be truly shocked if any of that actually happened, because she’s a Democrat and Democrats only get negative press if they leave the reservation.

Merovign on March 30, 2007 at 11:30 PM