The Sacramento Bee has a wonderful editorial on northstate Congressman John Doolittle's recent interview, "explaining" why he was so cozy with Jack Abramoff. Apparently, it's just a case of "friends helping friends":
Two things stand out in Doolittle's Feb. 18 interview with The Bee's David Whitney. One is his view of politics as a matter of friends helping friends. The other is that while he professes a "philosophy of limited government," he is willing to help his friends prosper through congressionally earmarked government contracts.
And toward the end:
Doolittle clearly is entrenched in a political culture of friends helping friends and a business culture focused on snaring public dollars. That might be normal in Washington, but is it what Doolittle's constituents expect him to be doing? Where does zeal to help friends from all corners of the nation leave the mass of his constituents - people who aren't his friends, but are owed his time and representation? How does he square his notions of limited government with his willingness to open the federal trough to a favored few?
Well, that leaves a lot of northstate folks out - we don't earn enough money to be on Doolittle's radar screen. Oh, but beyond skimming as much money as possible wherever he can get it, we peasants should be heartened to hear that his primary goal is supporting efforts to retain " In God We Trust" as our national motto. Well, that's good. As long as those four little words remain, I guess I don't have to worry about rising health care costs, rising eduation costs, rising fuel prices, mounting casualties in Iraq, loss of public lands, and fewer funds to rural counties. Count on Doolittle and his "friends" to know what the priorities are.