Jack Abramoff and the GOP

JACK ABRAMOFF AND THE GOP….A few weeks ago Greg Sargent wrote a piece in the American Prospect that analyzed the contribution patterns of Indian tribes represented by Jack Abramoff. One of the conclusions he highlighted was that “donations of Abramoff?s tribal clients to Democrats dropped by nine percent after they hired him.”

That figure is misleading since the post-Jack period was about half as long as the pre-Jack period, which makes a direct comparison impossible. Because of that, I focused on the annual contribution rate instead, which still shows that Abramoff overwhelmingly directed his contributions to Republicans.

Today, the analyst who originally prepared the raw data, Dwight Morris, weighed in. He agrees that the 9% figure is misleading, but says the numbers still show an extremely clear-cut partisan pattern. His conclusion:

In short, whatever one thinks of the 9 percent figure, these numbers demonstrate the undeniably Republican shift in giving in a far more compelling way. The nature of the giving switched from marginally Democratic to significantly Republican. The data do not show that Abramoff steered no money to Democrats. Congressional testimony from tribal leaders themselves shows that he clearly did so. However, Sargent made no such claim. As his article puts it, ?a great majority of contributions made by those clients went to Republicans.? That was and remains the central point of the piece, and if that did not come through, then hopefully the record has been set straight.

Read Morris’s full statement for more. Bottom line: as everyone knows, Abramoff was a lifelong Republican operative and steered the vast bulk of his clients’ contributions to Republicans. The minuscule amount of money he steered to Democrats hardly changes that.