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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Casino Jack’s Other Problem

Word is that Republican mega-lobbyist Jack Abramoff may finally get indicted late today or tomorrow on fraud charges related to casino operations. But not for his more famous involvement in casinos, the Indian Casino Shakedown Scandal. No: the impending indictment in Miami relates to alleged bank fraud by Abramoff and several partners in securing a loan to buy a casino cruise company, SunCruz Casinos, which later went belly-up during a legal battle over the deal. The seller, BTW, got murdered in the middle of all this in what authorities called a likely gangland hit. Nice.The incredible and ever-increasing web of dubious activity surrounding Abramoff and his political cronies is evidenced by this deadpan line in the AP story on the probable indictment: “[Rep. Tom] DeLay, R-Texas, was not mentioned in any lawsuits involved in the SunCruz deal.” This disclaimer tells you everything you need to know about how closely DeLay, Ralph Reed, Grover Norquist, and other key Republicans are tied to Casino Jack’s not-very-promising fate.

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