Harry Reid real-esate debacle gives way to Democrat hypocrisy

With political parties digging up dirt on each other in light of the upcoming election, much of the news is filled with shock stories of just exactly what goes on in that crazy Capitol of ours.

Unless you’ve recently become a societal recluse, you’ve most likely heard about “Page-gate” and the recent resignation of the disgraced Congressman Mark Foley; however, there is another scandal on the rise that many have not been alerted of: Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), is awaiting word from the Senate Select Committee on Ethics about his 2004 windfall land deal.

In the early 1990s, the Del Webb Corp. purchased land in an environmentally sensitive area around Lake Tahoe. Meanwhile, Reid encouraged the Department of the Interior to make land swaps on behalf of Del Webb, where a former aide to the senator worked. In 1995, he received $18,000 in campaign contributions from Del Webb. He continued with a second letter to the department.

In the fall of 1997, an agreement between Del Webb and the federal government took place where the company would receive Nevada government land on the booming outskirts of Las Vegas in return for its Lake Tahoe property.

In January 1998, Reid bought the land from Del Webb for $400,000. He then sold the land to a friend, Jay Brown, in 2001 for the price he bought it. Instead of being paid in money, he received the value of the land in ownership of Brown’s company and did not disclose the information.

Members of Congress are required to report all transactions involving investment properties. Reid did not disclose his sale of the Nevada land nor his ownership of Brown’s company.

What makes the situation hypocritical and even more inept is the fact that from 2003 to 2005, Reid sat on the Select Committee on Ethics.

Reid’s situation does not do justice to the Democratic Party’s tired campaign slogan of “A Culture of Corruption,” which describes Republicans in Congress. The fact that the lead Democrat in Washington is involved with the Ethics Committee illustrates that scandal is not reserved for one individual or party. It also exemplifies that, despite their claims, Democrats in Congress are not as ethical or populist as they pretend to be. Senator Reid, or rather, Senator Greed, is the epitome of that hypocrisy.