Tuesday, July 20, 2010 at 11:39 a.m.
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington has released a list of "Crooked Candidates," which, according to the organization, includes "the most corrupt and unethical candidates vying for federal office in 2010." The list includes only 11 names, and three of them are running for Florida's vacant Senate seat. Yes, Charlie Crist, Marco Rubio, and Kendrick Meek have all made the list.
Of the three, Republican Marco Rubio has the most charges levied against him. Surprising, considering of the three he's spent the least time in public office. CREW recounts suspicious spending on party credit cards, double-billing of flights, and a habit the group sees of inserting "earmarks into the state budget for his personal financial gain." Rubio took an unadvertised job as professor at FIU after steering $29 million to the school, earmarked $20 million for Jackson Memorial Hospital and then took an $8,000-a-month contract from the facility, and gave preferential treatment to Dosal Tobacco company, which was a major donor.
Democrat Kendrick Meek is criticized for his relationship with controversial developer Dennis Stackhouse, the business and political dealings of his mother Carrie Meek, and his business relationship with Wackenhut Corrections Corporation, even as he voted on bills that affected the company.
Independent Charlie Crist is hit for his relationship with troubled ex-RPOF chair Jim Greer and for "failing to investigate those with whom he had political or financial ties" during his run as attorney general.
Jeez, only 11 candidates made the list, and three of them are running for the same office. Somewhere, Jeff Greene, the only major candidate not named on the list, is smiling.