Voyeurs and strippers and scandal, oh my! This past week’s scoop de jure was that Republican National Committee staffers had paid for party officials at a club in which most strict conservatives would not be caught dead.
What exactly was all the ruckus about, you may ask? The whole thing started with a little too much liberty with party money and a poor choice of reimbursement. What it all boils down to is someone in the GOP ranks organizing a GOP youth-themed event at a club which traffics in sex and bondage… and then was reimbursed for expenses, to the tune of nearly $2,000.
GOP Chairman Michael Steele, who does not appear to have any connection with the strip joint, is still facing the ire of voters. Already, conservatives are expressing their displeasure over this “expenditure” and others, and many campaign donors and Republican Party members are none too happy.
Donors and voters in general are not pleased with party leaders who either mismanage political money, or are seen as allowing the mismanagement thereof. Voters are sick of fiscal irresponsibility and seeing their party leaders spend, take and spend, all at their perceived expense.
Even worse, the pattern of money mismanagement and shady financial dealings are nothing new to our two major political parties. This financing problem extends beyond the Republican Party.
In 2008, the group hosting the Democratic National Committee’s convention in Denver was embroiled in scandal when it was made known that the group was not paying full price for gas in the city. Some were ticked off that politicos were not subject to the same taxes which all other residents had to pay at the gas pump.
Back in 1996, officials in the Democratic National Committee were indicted or thrown in jail after being accused of taking bribes from China, in order to pocket funds and spread the wealth all the way up to the White House. In 2002, the former Democratic National Committee Chairman Terry McAuliffe was caught in a very awkward situation, when it appeared that he has made a nearly 20,000% profit on his investment in Global Crossing, Ltd.
Even more telling is the fact that even The Daily Kos points out that DNC members probably had the same fun at their donors expense, and party members probably also wasted donations on such things as “Go-go dancers and on frivolous activities.”
The list goes on and on! It’s time that party leaders stopped acting like they were hosting a raucous house party, and started acting like the heads of serious political parties.
Particularly in tough times, when few can still afford baubles, luxury and excess time to waste on nonsense, it’s time political party members put the serious political issues of the day at the forefront, and quit worrying about providing the entertainment.
If leaders in the DNC and RNC want Americans to take them seriously once more, they will need to start taking responsibility for their actions.