Fate officially caught up with Jack Abramoff today, as he received his first criminal sentencing. But the Abramoff scandal has created trouble for folks all over Washington — and Jack’s apparently giving plenty of dish to federal investigators from a variety of agencies looking to bring down their own targets.
As Vanity Fair reported a few weeks ago, “[a]llegedly as many as 15 people — from various branches of the Justice Department (including the F.B.I.), the Department of the Interior, the Internal Revenue Service, and other federal agencies” have spent 200 hours pumping Jack for information. So who could Jack be implicating?Interior: An investigation centers on J. Stephen Griles the former Deputy Secretary who fed Abramoff inside information on his department’s actions, and may have improperly aided Abramoff’s tribal clients.
General Services Administration: Federal prosecutors are investigating misdealings at GSA. Their main public target is David Safavian — although their actions have indicated their probe is not so narrowly focused, and may pull in others.
Justice Department: The FBI and Justice Inspector General are reportedly probing whether Abramoff was involved in booting a U.S. Attorney out of Guam because he was investigating Jack’s dealings in the territory.
Congress: Abramoff’s dirty doings have brought varying forms of suffering to the doorsteps of Sen. Conrad Burns (R-MT); former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-TX); and Reps. Bob Ney (R-OH) and John Doolittle (R-CA), who received money, fundraising support and other gifts and donations, and who did things favorable to Abramoff’s clients.
Burns has been named as a prime target in the government’s investigation. He may lose his seat in the upcoming election because of the taint of Abramoff, as well.
In addition to his own money laundering problems, DeLay is thought to have attracted interest from federal investigators because of the numerous trips and staff he shared with Abramoff, as well as the amount of money and favors passing between the two.
According to plea agreements from both Abramoff and his associate Michael Scanlon, Ney took bribes. (Man, was he up to some wacky stuff…) He’s also been named in the press as a target of the government’s investigation.
Last but not least: Doolittle has been identified as a target of the government’s investigation as well. The congressman took $140,000 from Abramoff and did a number of favors for him.
Additionally, Doolittle and others are ripe for investigation by the Federal Elections Commission for failing to properly report the use of Abramoff’s luxury skyboxes to host fundraising events.
Not a short list, to be sure, but it could probably be longer. Notably absent are any names from the White House — given Abramoff’s many dealings with the administration (arranging meetings with his clients, etc.), we’re sure he could drop a few shiny dimes on the folks at 1600 Pennsylvania. But is anyone asking him to?