Washington Post

Follow-Up Probe of HOME Program Reveals Weak HUD Oversight

HUD logoAt nearly $2 billion a year, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's HOME Investment Partnerships Program for the last two decades has produced housing for low-income households in the form of block grants to state and local government agencies. Yet a growing number of critics say its main legacy is a long trail of unfulfilled promises. The Washington Post once again has provided fuel for this view. A month ago the paper published a follow-up article to a lengthy May expose, revealing that about 75 projects have spent a combined $40 million "with little or nothing built." This is on top of the roughly 700 projects receiving $400 million in federal subsidies that the Post earlier identified as delayed or abandoned. HUD once again is insisting that HOME overall is a success. And Congress once again, justifiably, is highly skeptical.

Washington Post Exposes Flawed HUD Oversight of HOME Program

man hanging siding photoDelay, waste and corruption are nothing new to subsidized housing programs. An expose of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's HOME Investment Partnerships Program published in the May 14-17 Washington Post has reinforced the longstanding view of agency critics that too much money is going to line the pockets of developers who either are shady or in over their heads.

Paranoid Rangel Claims We Broke Into His Office

One of the more bizarre elements of today's Washington Post profile of Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY), by Wil Haygood, is this:

Rangel has genuine vitriol for the National Legal and Policy Center, which filed complaints against him with the Federal Election Commission, the IRS and the House Ethics Committee. He claims that investigators for the group followed him to the Dominican Republic and broke into his office.

Rangel has made no secret of his contempt for the National Legal and Policy Center (NLPC), but this is the first time he has libeled us or accused us of committing a crime.

DNC Donor Arrested for Threatening Rep. Cantor, Media Warns of 'Tea Party' Violence

CantorA Democratic National Committee donor was arrested on Monday for death threats that he made toward Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA), but many journalists are still blaming the conservative "tea party" movement for allegedly fomenting political violence.

Philadelphia resident Norman Leboon, 33, was charged for posting a YouTube video in which he threatened to kill Cantor and his family, just days after a bullet was fired through the window of Cantor’s Richmond campaign office by an unknown gunman.

"You receive my bullets in your office, remember they will be placed in your heads. You and your children are Lucifer's abominations," Leboon reportedly said in the video. According to Federal Election Commission filings, Leboon is a Barack Obama supporter, who donated $505 to the Democratic National Committee in June, 2008.

Baucus’ Girlfriend Planned His Divorce; Story Contradicted of Her Withdrawal from U.S. Attorney Consideration

Baucus photoSenator Max Baucus (D-MT) claimed last week that he pulled his recommendation of girlfriend Melodee Hanes for a U.S. Attorney post because the “relationship intensified,” as the New York Times put it. But now Jodi Rave, a former reporter for Lee Newspapers, writes on her blog:

As a reporter who covered the story here in Montana…I have a different perspective about why Hanes and Baucus jointly agreed to withdraw her name. I talked to Hanes and to Baucus spokesman about the relationship…I called the senator’s spokesman and told him we were going to finally print the story…Within what seemed like minutes, K Barrett Kaiser sent an email to the newsroom and said that Hanes “was NOT” a candidate.

Washington Post Calls on Rangel to Resign Ways and Means Chairmanship, But What About Criminality?

Washington Post logoIn an editorial today titled "Sorry Charlie," the Washington Post called on Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY) to step down as House Ways and Means Chairman. The editorial comes in the wake of Rangel amending his financial disclosure forms for the years 2002 to 2006, showing that his net worth was roughly double what he previously claimed. The Post called Rangel’s revised filings “a treasure trove of outrage.”

Rangel’s amendments were prompted by increased scrutiny of his finances after NLPC exposed his failure to disclose (or pay taxes on) rental income from his beachfront “villa” at the Punta Cana resort in the Dominican Republic.

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