Since I began my work on the Abramoff investigation, I have remained unimpressed with Jack Abramoff’s counsel, Abbe Lowell, who recently won a “white collar criminal defense award” for his questionable legal ability. As far as I can discern, Lowell is the ultimate celebrity ambulance chaser whose efforts on behalf of Abramoff were ineffectual, if not downright scandalous. In place of robust defense, Lowell primped and posed for for the cameras and rubbed shoulders with the political glitterati while his client was railroaded into prison.
Lowell’s representation of Abramoff appears to have been marred with conflicts of interest from the beginning. For one, Lowell is a close colleague of and has raised campaign contributions for Martin Frost, the Democratic Congressman in Texas who nearly lost his seat during Congressman Tom DeLay’s gerrymandering in Texas. DeLay’s redistricting in his effort to shore up Republican power in the state sparked the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s investigation to determine whether DeLay had broken campaign finance laws, ultimately leading to his removal from the House of Representatives and conviction on money laundering charges years later.
Last night I got to attend an event were US Congressman Lamar Smith was speaking to his local constituency in Central Texas. It was nice to hear one of the good guys speaking with a positive message. He told us that we are great at speaking about House Bill #### but we do not relate it to “what does it mean for me”. “We must relate our conversation to what it means to the voter and not worry about what the media will say about us.” He is now the Chairman of the Science, Space, and Technology after mandatory term limit as Chairman of the Judiciary Committee. The focus on space as the next frontier not the final frontier and stop paying the Russians 43 million to send one American to the space station needs to be brought back to the USA.
There was a great deal of frustration with most of his fellow Republican’s but a few people asked the questions that we can apply to our conversations with our friends, family, and neighbors.
In the immediate aftermath of the 2012 election, I looked desperately for the silver lining. Almost every candidate I supported was defeated, including several friends. My hard sought silver lining finally revealed itself in that I was relieved to be in a state that periodically resists the ever growing federal overreach, my newly elected freshman state representative was able to knock off an entrenched incumbent with limited government ideals, and my state sent Ted Cruz to Washington D.C. If any state in the union was likely to stand up to the federal government, and embrace the 10th Amendment, it was Texas. I spoke to despondent friends and family about the importance of local control – if local politicians choose to stand up and take control.
For much of my life, I allowed myself to be consumed by things out of my control, and because of that, I suffered for years from stress, depression and anxiety. When I finally reached a breaking point about 4 years ago, I realized that something had to change, or I simply wasn't going to make it. With God's grace and the support of a loving family, I set out on a quest to make those changes.