Las Vegas Sun

April 19, 2014

Currently: 64° — Complete forecast | Log in | Create an account

Letter to the editor:

Looking at mud when dust settles

Rep. Shelley Berkley fought a courageous battle in the U.S. Senate race against Republican opponent Sen. Dean Heller in this past election and lost.

There was a lot of mud slinging in the campaign stating that Berkley was the “most corrupt” politician in Congress and that she tried to enrich her husband by fighting to keep open the only kidney transplant center in Las Vegas.

However, the House ethics panel said Berkley violated rules but found no evidence of impropriety on her part regarding the kidney center; the panel said the Nevada Democrat made to attempt no enrich herself.

When looking at how bad politicians want to win an election and how far they will go to get theirs, one only has to say what a way that was to win an election, or should I say, what a way to lose an election. Politics is a dirty game.

Join the Discussion:

Check this out for a full explanation of our conversion to the LiveFyre commenting system and instructions on how to sign up for an account.

Full comments policy

Previous Discussion: 24 comments so far…

Comments are moderated by Las Vegas Sun editors. Our goal is not to limit the discussion, but rather to elevate it. Comments should be relevant and contain no abusive language. Comments that are off-topic, vulgar, profane or include personal attacks will be removed. Full comments policy. Additionally, we now display comments from trusted commenters by default. Those wishing to become a trusted commenter need to verify their identity or sign in with Facebook Connect to tie their Facebook account to their Las Vegas Sun account. For more on this change, read our story about how it works and why we did it.

Only trusted comments are displayed on this page. Untrusted comments have expired from this story.

  1. Sam:

    You're still in her corner after all the Congressional Committee members, bi-partisan to boot, found her guilty. Albeit on the grounds of stupidity rather than smarts. What Berkeley and her office did, among other things, was to consistently and conveniently intervene with government sponsored bureacrats who ran Medicaid and Medicare so they paid her husband/friends' bills promptly. In other words she used her official office and position to get her husband/friends paid first by the government before all others. Politicians are not supposed to do it. And if they do, they are supposed to disclose that they are. She didn't. Dumb, dumber, dumbest.

    CarmineD

  2. Yes, politics is a dirty game. Interesting that our elected "leaders" are so often those most successful at misleading us in an election campaign.

  3. Jeff:

    You forget, or deny the fact and/or both, that it was a bipartisan Congressional Committee of her peers who found Berkley guilty of ethics violations. Not us posters here. If we posters wear depends for agreeing with and/or accepting the facts and objectivity of the Committee findings, as you say, then I'm perfectly happy to do so. While you keep messing on yourself and smelling long in need and overdue for a mindset change.

    CarmineD

  4. "I didn't care much about either one of the candidates for the Senate," Jeffery

    I said here many times that Berkley was the better candidate and Heller couldn't hold a candle to her. But I said her clear conflict of political and personal interests would cause her to lose the election, as well it should, to a lesser candidate. In fact I said so in June 2012 when the bipartisan Committee voted unanimously to investigate her for ethics violations.

    CarmineD

  5. Carmine,Future,Freeman,
    When I decided to write this letter the 3 of you all came to mind as the 3 who would still find Shelley Berkley guilty.

    I suggest you read again that the House ethics panel found no evidence of impropriety on her part regarding the kidney center,and the panel said that the Nevada Democrat made no attempt to enrich herself.

    I don't expect the 3 of you to ever look at things as they are,I only expect you to look at things from your party line thinking.Hate also is a dirty game.

  6. ByRHG58,

    "Poor Sam, he only gets his panties in a knot when it's a Democrat on the receiving end of some unflattering political ads.Smearing Republicans,well that's just good politics".

    I'm a registered Republican and will remain that way.However I vote for the person who best serves the interests of our country.That includes voting for both Republicans and Democrats of my choice. Country first,party second.

  7. "Nevada Democrat made no attempt to enrich herself." Samspeaks

    No not herself, her husband and his doctor friends.

    The worse payer in the world is the Federal government. After getting burned with them, I refused to do any business with them ever. They would take the 2/10 net 30 discounts and pay years later if they ever paid at all.

    What did Rep Berkley do? She and her office staff used the her office and her position to force Federal bureacrats to pay up for her husband and his friends. Then she refused to disclose to the public that she did. That's not a crime but's it's an ethics violation. And she paid the ultimate price for the lapse of judgment. We can argue with opinions for her lapses in judgment for doing what she did. But we can't argue the fact that she did. That is incontrovertible. Now more so that the Congressional Committee said so.

    CarmineD

  8. "In a five-page report, released Thursday, the House Ethics Committee determined that Berkley had "violated House Rules and other laws, rules and standards of conduct" and was guilty of "improperly using her official position" to lobby the Veterans' Administration to address a dispute with her husband's firm concerning overdue payments, upon her husband's request."

    CarmineD

  9. To the 3 it's party first no matter what. For me it's country first no matter what.

  10. We're pretty much manipulated by the medical autocrats look at the recent stories in the RG concerning dialysis.

  11. ByHerertic,

    Thanks for your comment.

  12. Sam:

    You're groping for straws. The Committee's findings and conclusions are final. Berkley... "violated House Rules and other laws, rules and standards of conduct" and was guilty of "improperly using her official position." You can slice and dice it anyway you want. In the final analysis she is guilty. It has nothing to do with party, posters here, voters who elected Heller over her, and country. It's as straight forward as the facts can be. No gray area. Black and white. She is guilty and she lost the elction for Senator, as well she should for her transgressions.

    CarmineD

  13. "My country, right or wrong!"

    "Originally Stephen Decatur, in an after-dinner toast of 1816--1820:
    "Our Country! In her intercourse with foreign nations may she always be in the right; but right or wrong, our country!"

    Later stated by, and often attributed to, Carl Schurz, 1872.
    "My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right."

    CarmineD

  14. Carmine,

    Like I said you 3 would find Shelley Berkley guilty,even thou the Ethics panel didn't.

  15. Jeff,
    The timing of the investigation by the Ethics panel was clearly made to happen after the election.Like I've said,politics is a dirty game.

  16. Sam:

    There is good reason for the report after the election. If the report had it been issued before the election, with the same findings, it would have required the House to "censure" Rep. Berkley for ethics violations.

    "In the House of Representatives, censure is essentially a form of public humiliation carried out on the House floor. As the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives reads out a resolution rebuking the member for the specified misconduct, the member must stand in the House well and listen to it. This process has been described as a morality play in miniature."

    "In the history of the House, censure has been used 23 times, and most of the cases arose during the 19th century. In the modern history of the United States House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct (since 1966), censure has been used five times, most recently in December 2010 against Charles B. Rangel."

    I opine that a "censure" proceeding right before the election would have hurt Berkley's chances more. She would have lost by more than 12,500 votes to Heller. I suspect the Congressional Committee agrees and held the report in abeyance until the election was over.

    CarmineD

  17. Dina Titus won Berkley's 1st District seat, unopposed in the Dem primary and handily beating the GOP unknown in the election. Titus takes office on Jan 3, 2013, when Berkley retires.

    If Berkley were politically smart, she would have run for an 8th term in the House, received the censure after winning, and then a bid for US Senate in the mid terms of 2014 or 2015 when her 8th term ended. When, hopefully, she could have time to convince the electorate, with short memories, that her ethics violations were minor. She risked it all by jumping too fast for the US Senate seat with too much political baggage to overcome. Just with the looming Congressional Committee's findings in the future.

    CarmineD

  18. Had Berkley won the Senate election, at worst she would have had to undergo the "censure" proceeding in the House before/after being sworn in as Senator. In either case, it would have had a ceremonial effect only with no legal consequences. I believe Berkley was too afraid for whatever reasons to take the public humiliation in the House. Not a good trait for a future or past politician.

    CarmineD

  19. But Berkley felt/thought if she had to take the public Congressional humiliation she would prefer to do so as a newly elected Senator. Not as a returning House representative. Ego? Pride? Both?

    Whatever, a break in public service is just what Berkley needs to contemplate her transgressions and profit by them.

    CarmineD

  20. Carmine,
    Sam, You're groping at straws.
    The committee's findings and conclusions are final.Berkley---"violated house rules and other laws,rules and standards of conduct."and was guilty of improperly using her office,position".

    I believe we were talking about allegations that she was the "most corrupt politician in congress". no evidence of improperity on her part regarding the kidney center.The panel said the Nevada Democrat made no attempt to enrich herself.The Ethics panel's decision is final.

    I would rather you stay on the Ethic panel's decision and not wander off on something else.She would not have been considered the most "corrupt politician in congress" for the minor rules the Ethics panel said she violated. She lost because she was labled "the most corrupt" and nothing more.You the 3 have found her guilty,and will never waver from your convictions.

  21. Sam:

    I never accused Berkley of being corrupt. I accused her of commiting a conflict of interests by not disclosing her intervention on behalf of her husband and his business, and his friends, and by not disclosing it to the public. She didn't do so, go public, until she was accused. Go back to my posts here in June 2012 and before and after. I have always said the same. She violated ethics and code of conduct standards. The Congressional Committee said the same and agreed in its findings and conclusions with me. As such, had Berkley not retired from the House, she would have been "censured" by the House for the ethics and code of conduct violations.

    CarmineD

  22. In fact, Sam, I am almost positive that I posted [even before the Committee unanimously voted to investigate Berkley] that as a public servant she must not only avoid a conflict of interests BUT EVEN THE APPEARANCE OF A CONFLICT OF INTERESTS. As a 7 term House member, Berkley should have known better than to do what she did and not disclose it. She would have been better served if at least she disclosed the fact BEFORE she was accused of ethics violation by a story run first by the NY Times in September 2011.

    CarmineD

  23. George W. Bush created the war on Iraq. Not one iota of guilt resulting from accusations against was ever demonstrated or found. No terrorists (bin Laden was after Saddam Hussein as much as Bush), no biological weapons - except cholera in the water supplies, no chemical weapons, not atomic bomb program.

    The House Ethics committee has no connection to truth, ethics or morals. They are 110% politics as normal. The House committee on science space and technology is the biggest bunch of Religious lunatics seen on this Earth since the Heart of the Inquisition.

    The House committee on science is a laugh a minute bunch of huckster trash, like the House committees that oversee "Republican Ethics", the greatest oxymoron that ever existed.

  24. Nothing said about the "wanna-be-felons" long history of questionable ethics, morals and honesty in any of your rants, folks. Where there is smoke, there usually is fire and, with Berkley, there's plenty of smoke. She is dishonest to the core and I am delighted she no longer "represents" me. She's also a hypocrite, crying crocodile tears about the "Holocaust" while at the same time actively advocating, particpating in and promoting a "holocaust" 7 times as great as the one perpetrated by the Nazis in WWII - abortion. Abortions in the USA alone have executed some 41 million (and counting) unborn and innocent victims. Does Berkely care? Not a whit. After all, they can't vote so they don't count.