Tags: Anti-DeLay | Group | Unmasked

Anti-DeLay Group Unmasked

Tuesday, 10 May 2005 12:00 AM

CREW's executive director is Melanie Sloan, a former aide to Democratic Rep. John Conyers of Michigan and Democratic Sen. Joe Biden of Delaware. Yet CREW is often cited as "non-partisan" in press reports quoting Sloan's many attacks on DeLay.

For example, on April 14 U.S. Newswire identified CREW as "a non-partisan, non-profit organization that targets government officials who sacrifice the common good to special interests."

Congressional Republicans complain that the attention given to CREW and other DeLay-bashing groups "represents a third source of hostile fire on top of daily fusillades from overt Democratic partisans and from the media," according to the Journal.

DeLay spokesman Dan Allen declared: "These groups are run by former Democratic Hill staffers or candidates, they are being funded by liberal heavy-hitters and they are constantly attacking House Republicans as part of a well-organized political strategy."

CREW's own website states that the group "will build a non-partisan investigative alliance that transcends specific issues."

But Sloan has admitted that since she joined CREW, "the main thing I wanted to do was go after Tom DeLay. DeLay is my top target."

Sloan asked the IRS to audit two of DeLay's fundraising committees and sued the Federal Election Commission to obtain more information about possible financial ties between DeLay and a Kansas utility.

In 2003, she drafted a complaint about DeLay's fundraising and political activities and asked retiring Democratic Rep. Chris Bell of Texas to file it with the House Ethics panel.

The panel eventually scolded DeLay, but also criticized Bell for violating the House's rules for decorum with its "severe characterization" of DeLay in the complaint, the Journal reports.

DeLay has asked the panel to hold CREW in contempt for its role in the complaint.

The organization's high-profile attacks on DeLay haven't hurt CREW's fundraising efforts. IRS documents show that donations soared to $520,000 in 2004, up from $167,500 the previous year.

IRS documents also reveal that Barbra Streisand has contributed $10,000 to CREW, while another $50,000 has come from a charitable organization run by Democratic fundraiser Smith Bagley.

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CREW's executive director is Melanie Sloan, a former aide to Democratic Rep. John Conyers of Michigan and Democratic Sen. Joe Biden of Delaware. Yet CREW is often cited as "non-partisan" in press reports quoting Sloan's many attacks on DeLay. For example, on April 14...
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2005-00-10
Tuesday, 10 May 2005 12:00 AM
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