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Tuesday, December 09, 2003

Detroit Free Press on the Nick Smith bribery case:
From last Friday's Free Press:

Smith won't say exactly who made the offer.

He should. It's a serious charge, if not rising to the level of a federal bribery offense, then certainly worthy of a review by the House Ethics Committee. Smith may not wish to further offend the GOP leadership by naming names, but to do otherwise casts a pall on every Republican in Congress and hands the Democrats an election-year issue.

If this was just hardball politics, well, that's hardly a new game in Washington, and Democrats played it pretty well when they had the power. But if somebody stepped over the line from nasty rhetoric to outright threats and even an offer of money for a vote, the public has a right to know. Smith decided not to shut up about it. Good for him. But now he should put up and let this air out -- for the good of the Congress.