Today at two, convicted New Hampshire phone jammer and author Allen Raymond will testify before the House Judiciary Committee as part of its ongoing probe into the 2002 crime.
They keep on asking questions because they have gone unanswered. As Raymond laid it out in How To Rig An Election, he doesn't buy the story that Jim Tobin, the former Republican National Committee official who was convicted for his part in arranging the jamming, didn't confer with his higher-ups in the RNC and the White House about the scheme. And since he personally urged well-connected Republicans to snuff the Justice Department's investigation, he certainly doesn't think it's far-fetched that they took his advice.
Your quick refresher on the details of the scheme: Charles McGee, then the executive director of the New Hampshire GOP, was the one who had the genius idea of jamming Democratic phone lines on Election Day. He called Jim Tobin, the New England Regional Director of the RNC, to ask for help implementing it. Tobin then called Raymond, whom he knew from working on the 2000 Steve Forbes campaign and who ran a telemarketing consulting firm, to see if he could do the job. Raymond said he could, and things went on from there.
After the jamming came to light in early 2003, it took until after the 2004 elections for Tobin was finally indicted. Democrats have alleged that the probe was slow-rolled and stifled by an inadequate devotion of resources at the FBI.
Despite the fact that the Justice Department has so far stonewalled the committee's requests for information and documents about the probe, they are trying to keep it in the public eye with a hearing today.
And they might get some help on that score from Hollywood. The AP reported over the weekend that Billy Ray, the writer and director of Shattered Glass, is working on an adaptation of Raymond's book.
Allow me to make some casting suggestions. Jon Voight as Jim Tobin, I'd say. Philip Seymour Hoffman would be a strong choice to play McGee (he's pictured to the left there). Paul Giamatti as Raymond. And maybe Josh could be persuaded to play himself.