Saturday, January 27, 2007

Senator Feinstein steers $$$ to husband's firms - conflict?

Senator Feinstein is now in charge of enforcing ethics rules on all senators, as chair of Senate Rules Committee. But don't expect her to follow the rules. In the recent past she voted for appropriations to her husband's firms. MetroActive reports:
As chairperson and ranking member of the Military Construction Appropriations subcommittee (MILCON) from 2001 through the end of 2005, Feinstein supervised the appropriation of billions of dollars a year for specific military construction projects. Two defense contractors whose interests were largely controlled by her husband, financier Richard C. Blum, benefited from decisions made by Feinstein as leader of this powerful subcommittee. Each year, MILCON's members decide which military construction projects will be funded from a roster proposed by the Department of Defense. Contracts to build these specific projects are subsequently awarded to such major defense contractors as Halliburton, Fluor, Parsons, Louis Berger, URS Corporation and Perini Corporation. From 1997 through the end of 2005, with Feinstein's knowledge, Blum was a majority owner of both URS Corp. and Perini Corp.
She is a Democrat. Do the ethics rules apply to her? The MetroActive article is very detailed. Feinstein received was supposed to not vote on issues relating to her husband's firms and she was informed what to avoid. But she voted anyway - when she should not have.

No comments: