Magazine article The Washington Monthly

Casino Jack Knows What He's Talking About

Magazine article The Washington Monthly

Casino Jack Knows What He's Talking About

Article excerpt

I never expected to find myself in agreement with Jack Abramoff, who recently emerged from prison after serving three years for his leading role in one of Washington's biggest corruption scandals. But as I watched the November 6 episode of 60 Minutes, I was nodding, "Yes, yes, that's the way it's done," as he explained how he had corrupted congressmen and their staffers:

"I would say, or my staff would say, to him or her, at some point, 'You know, when you're done working on the Hill, we'd very much like for you to consider coming to work for us.' Now, when I said that to them, or any one of our staff said that to them, that was it. we owned them."

Abramoff was far from the only Washington lobbyist to dangle the prospect of future employment as an incentive for public officials to "cooperate." It is a common practice, though often done with more subtlety, with a hint or two being enough. …

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