The Lincoln Plawg - the blog with footnotes

Politics and law from a British perspective (hence Politics LAW BloG): ''People who like this sort of thing...'' as the Great Man said

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Thursday, June 23, 2005

Novak fingers Biden pay-off - he says

In the Good Old Days, Democratic politics was par excellence a business of jobs. (Which is not to say that GOP patronage was unheard of. Far from it. But there is no Republican equivalent of George Washington Plunkitt - that I'm aware of - and the machines he epitomised were mostly Democratic. And the fuel those machines ran on was jobs.)

According to the Prince of Darkness, Concentration Camp Bob Novak, that Scoop Jackson de nos jours, Joe Biden, the Senator from MBNA, is manoeuvering to keep a generous Democratic donor, Norman Pattiz, on the Broadcasting Board of Governors.

The what?

According to the BBG site
On October 1, 1999, the Broadcasting Board Governors (BBG) became the independent, autonomous entity responsible for all U.S. government and government sponsored, non-military, international broadcasting.

And that would be?

From the same source:
the Voice of America (VOA), Alhurra, Radio Sawa, Radio Farda, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL), Radio Free Asia (RFA), and Radio and TV Martí

Pattiz is in the biz himself, as founder and chairman of Westwood One. Quite what angles he can work with the BBG is not clear to me. But, evidently, he likes the spot, and has got Biden to exert himself to make sure he keeps it.

Novak says that, because Pattiz signed an anti-Bush ad last year, it's a non-starter. But Biden has placed a hold on State Department nominee Dina Habib Powell. Who is Arab, born in Egypt. They don't have too many of her kind in the Federal government.

You'd have thought that PNAC Lite Biden would have supported this infusion of actual expertise, pending further wars in the region. But, it seems, helping out the Dem moneybags takes priority.

Sez Novak. We recall here his fabulation about Indian ballot-stuffing in the 2002 South Dakota US Senate election (January 13 2004). But a search on pattiz biden produces pieces like this from AP which corroborate the story.

(Disappointingly - for the story! - Westwood One does not appear on the list of Biden's top donors for the 2002 cycle - when he last contested his seat [1].)

Of course, Powell only needs 60 senators to see the light. Novak quotes Sarbanes and Feingold as supporting her nom - perhaps this little campaign of Biden's may be following Bush's Iraq war toiletwards.

  1. More on Pattiz here and here. According to, Westwood One does not have a PAC.

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