Sen. Ted Stevens declared his innocence Tuesday after his indictment on charges that he concealed hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of gifts and services from a company in his home state.
* * *
In the 28-page indictment, Stevens was charged with seven counts of making false statements on his Senate financial disclosure forms.
* * *
The 84-year-old senator is a former chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee and is renowned for his prowess in steering federal funds to his vast, sparsely populated state.
Stevens is the oldest Republican senator and second in age only to Sen. Robert Byrd, the 90-year-old Democrat from West Virginia.
He has represented Alaska in Washington since 1968 and is up for re-election in November. He is the longest-serving Republican senator in history.
“The Republican approach I think has played itself out. I think it’s fair to say the Republicans were the party of ideas for a pretty long chunk of time over the last 10 or 15 years, in the sense that they were challenging conventional wisdom. Now, you’ve heard it all before. You look at the economic policies, when they’re being debated among the presidential candidates, it’s all tax cuts. Well, we’ve done that, we’ve tried it.”
“I have to say, you know, my leading opponent the other day said that he thought the Republicans had better ideas than Democrats the last ten to fifteen years. That’s not the way I remember the last ten to fifteen years.”
“Her principal opponent said that since 1992, the Republicans have had all the good ideas. I’m not making this up, folks.”
In 1982, in an essay entitled “The Spawn of Annenberg, Part 1”, Harlan Ellison wrote about his visit to San Quentin and the chilling experience of listening to the convicted murderer of a 5-year-old child explain why he couldn’t have done what he obviously had done.
The convict had stomped the boy to death, but explained that he could not have done it because he wears sneakers.
And sneakers are soft.