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Tuesday, September 07, 2004

AIPAC, Iran, Chalabi, Franklin, Alabama

Juan Cole has a longish post about the FBI investigation into the Pentagon-Israel-Iran spy story. He focuses on the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, or AIPAC, "America's Pro-Israel Lobby," as it says on their web site, and their influence on Congress. He describes how five-term Alabama Congressman Earl Hilliard was removed from Congress with the help of enormous AIPAC-encouraged out-of-state money funnelled to his fellow-Democratic opponent, Artur Davis, in 2002. I believe AIPAC was instrumental in defeating Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney in a Democratic primary in Georgia in 2002 as well.

Juan Cole points out something I totally agree with:
It ought to be illegal for congressional contests to be interfered with to this extent by money from another state. The technique of targeting congressmen for un-election has given enormous power to all single-issue lobbies, and not just AIPAC.
Tom DeLay (R-Hades) has gathered enormous power through his control of Republican PAC's, funneling enormous amounts of campaign funding only to Republicans across the nation who agree to toe the DeLay-Bush line. Combined with agressive jerrymandering, this has resulted in an almost monolithic Republican voting block in the House, as well as the ability to pick off Democratic seats one by one.