Rick Santorum's Fake Charity Scam

Last week Santorum's little House of Fake Godliness was shattered by the well-researched Will Bunch expose in THE AMERICAN PROSPECT, which reminded me of how the Cunningham scandals started unwinding almost one year ago. Cunningham was undone by some monkey-business involving a bribe plan that involved mortgage financing. And that is exactly how Santorum has been bribed by some fat cat GOP corporate types as well.

This is far from Rick Santorum's first brush with severe ethics lapses. In fact, his whole K Street Project is one of the most corrupt and insidious plots ever perpetrated against the American people by their own legislators. But on top of all this, we now find out, courtesy of the PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, that Santorum was running one of those fake Republican charities (just like Abramoff, DeLay, Frist and other crooks currently in limbo between plea bargaining and prison terms).

What Little Ricky Man-on-Dog was doing, while we thought all he cared about was trying to ruin the lives of gay men and women, was collecting money (tax-free, of course; the Republican way) that was supposed to go to charity but instead using the bulk of it as political pay-offs for his aides and cronies. And, of course, the charities short-changed were those run by the religionist suckers who vote for dishonest fanatics like Santorum. Operation Good Neighbor, Santorum's scam, "donated about 40 percent of the $1.25 million it spent during a four-year period-- well below Better Business Bureau standards-- paying out the rest for overhead, including several hundred thousand dollars to campaign aides on the charity payroll, records show." The absolute minimum permissible for the Better Business Bureau's Wise Giving Alliance is 65%-- and even that raises eyebrows. This seems to be a good time for me to point out that there is actually a good government, reform progressive who is running against Santorum (NOT the almost-as-reactionary-as-Santorum Bob Casey), Chuck Pennacchio and the thoroughly progressive ACT BLUE doesn't pass along only 40% of donations or only 65% of donations or even a stellar 90% of donations. If you contribute to Pennacchio or other Democratic candidates through ACT BLUE, 100% goes to the candidate's campaign-- everything, every dime; nothing gets raked off for anyone, the way Santorum was doing it. Please check out the DWTACT BLUE Page which is collecting donations to put scammers of BOTH parties out of business. We offer an opportunity to contribute to the political demise of crooked Republicans like Rick Santorum and Mark Foley and to the political demise of crooked Democrats like Joe Lieberman and Henry Cuellar. Take a look. And even $10 helps!

Back to the Philadelphia Inquirer story. Turns out Santorum was paying his campaign staffers and fundraisers with fat salaries from his bogus charity. So when you thought you were contributing money for the neighborhood church to serve hot lunches to impoverished eldery folks, you were really contributing to bolstering Santorum's (shameful) political career. In true George W. Bush fashion, Santorum, of course, claims ignorance and says he wasn't involved with the day-to-day operations of this scam. Well, I'll believe that as fast as I'll believe Bush wasn't aware of the Dubai-U.S. Ports deal that would gigantically enrich his family, family retainers and political allies.


Tags: Bob Casey, Chuck Pennacchio, K Street Project, Man On Dog, PA Senate, Rick Santorum (all tags)


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