WILLIAM JEFFERSON SHOULD NOT BE RE-ELECTED
Why would I start off a post with that title?
Maybe because Hurricane Katrina pulled off the covers; not highlighting racism at its' worst, or the greed that contractors have in benefitting and proffiting off human suffering, but because the ravages of Katrina clearly highlighted that Jefferson was representing his district in name only. As a congressman, he should have been directing some "pork" to his district to benefit his constituents. And even though I've beat up on Harold Ford, Jr. a bit for his asinine political stances and alliances, nonetheless, he's quite capable of delivering enough pork to his Memphis constituents to the point they keep sending him back to Congress.
Jefferson doesn't even do that. There's no excuse that Jefferson's constituency should have been shown in varying degrees of poverty that direction of job creation projects, or "pork" wouldn't have failed to allieviate.
Additionally, his constituency has been washed away into the Gulf of Mexico, and scattered North, further South, East and West, by Katrina, so it's questionable that Jefferson will even have a district to represent in Congress in 2006. So, to sit by and watch the Government award no-bid contracts to Halliburton, and not scream that your constituents will not have a part in rebuilding where they used to live, because they won't be allowed back to their neighborhoods, is so foul and treasonous, that Jefferson should just resign from Congress.
Jesse Jackson, SR., has more on it here:http://www.suntimes.com/output/jesse/cst-edt-jesse11.html.
The grade on his performance as a lawmaker in the CBC Monitor's Report Card, didn't go far enough (He got an "F", and is considered one of the seven "Derelicts of the CBC"). Researching his votes on the "bright line" issues the group selected, demonstrated that Jefferson was more willing to sell out his constituency than represent their best interests. And Katrina's devastation has his dereliction of duty as a Congressman in full effect for everyone to see.
We can front off on Bush's dereliction in this disaster; because he's the President of the United States, and, as Rev. Jackson's article states, the cronyism he used to give important positions, such as FEMA director; their incompentency cost lives. But William Jefferson's dereliction is being felt on a more intense level; his failure to vigorously represent his constituency set the stage for the disaster that was Hurricane Katrina. He failed to provide the most fundamental of representation; ensuring jobs that paid a liveable and sustainable wage, so people would have had the resources to evacuate when it became necessary. He allowed his constituency to wallow below acceptable levels of poverty, and there are no levels of poverty which should ever be acceptable.
I don't live in Louisiana, but my parents were born and reared there; my older brother was born there, and as far as I know, both parents have relatives in the New Orleans/Baton Rouge and Lake Charles areas. As far as I know, many of them were able to flee up north to Shreveport, and depending on the condition of their homes, they may have to stay there and start new lives. And they counted on William Jefferson to represent their best interests in Congress.
I'll bet that having your constituency washed away into the Gulf of Mexico was something Jefferson never counted on; no Congressperson can ever foresee a natural disaster. But the after-effects, or the lack of preparation and provision, should not have shown the degree to which he failed them in his representation of their best interests in Congress. The most "stand-up" act he could do is to gracefully resign from office.
That may be a moot point, espeically if he no longer has a district to represent, because it washed away in the Gulf and the survivors have relocated elsewhere into another Congressperson's district.