Conservative Controversies & Scandals

2014 Major Republican Scandals & Controversies

  • Former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell and his wife were charged in Federal Court for illegally accepting thousands of dollars in gifts, vacations, and loans from businessman Jonnie R. Williams Sr. in exchange for special treatment from the Governor. McDonnell is the first Governor to face federal charges in Virginia's long history. Update: Governor McDonnell was convicted on 11 counts. He will be sentenced on January 6th, 2015.
  • Newly elected House Majority Whip Steve Scalise spoke at a White Supremacist conference in 2002, during his tenure as a state representative in Louisiana. Representative Scalise spoke at a workshop designed "to teach the most effective and up-to-date methods of civil rights and heritage related activism." Scalise insists he didn't know that he was speaking to a hate group and says that he used to speak to any group that would hear him talk abo'ut his dislike of 'slush funds.'
  • A former aide to Representative Frank Farenthold has sued the congressman and his office staff for creating a hostile work environment and gender discrimination. The former aide accused the congressman of making sexual comments about her and claimed he is regularly drunk on the job, which caused him to say a plethora of inappropriate things. She is seeking an unspecified amount of money for lost pay and emotional distress.
  • The National Republican Congressional Committee and outside Republican groups set up fake Twitter accounts to share internal polling data throughout the 2014 midterm elections. The fake Twitter accounts would share what would look like gibberish to most people, but was in fact internal polling data meant to help the Super PAC's determine where to spend their dollars. This collusion may violate election laws preventing coordination between Super PAC's and the campaigns they are supporting.
  • Florida Governor Rick Scott refused to take the debate stage for over four minutes in protest over a small fan that Charlie Crist was using. The Governor claimed that Crist broke the rules of the debate, but the Crist campaign released a signed document showing otherwise.
  • The Palin family was involved in a verbal and physical altercation at a birthday party they recently attend in Alaska. Multiple witnesses have come forward and claimed the brawl started shortly after the family arrived in their stretch hummer and Palin's son Track spotted a former boyfriend of Willow Palin. The witnesses say it only escalated from there with "Palin women screaming. Palin men thumping their chests. Word is that Bristol has a particularly strong right hook, which she employed repeatedly." The Palin's were then asked to leave the party by the owner of the house, who was reportedly struck by Bristol Palin a number of times. No charges have been filed as of yet, but the police say they are investigating the brawl and will release more information at a later date.
  • Representative Tom Cotton aired a television advertisement accusing President Obama of hijacking "the farm bill and turn[ing] it into a food stamp bill." He went on to say that is the reason why he voted against the bill. This blatantly misleading advertisement neglects to inform his audience that the Farm Bill has always had provisions in it that pay for the Food Stamp program, as well as direct payments to American farmers. He also mislead his audience because the 2013 bill actually cut the budget for the Food Stamp program.
  • Oregon Senate candidate Monica Wehby has removed her health care plan from her campaign website after it was reported she plagiarized major portions of Crossroads USA's proposal and insinuated it was her own plan. Rove's plan was released in July of 2013 while Wehby's was released in November of the same year.
  • In Terri Lynn Land's finacial disclosure forms, she claimed that she was worth $1.5 million dollars. She has since donated $3 million of her own money to her campaign. Her staff has claimed that she inadvertently omitted a joint banking account in her disclosures. The amount of money in this account has yet to be disclosed but the sudden appearance of $3 million to a campaign raises many questions.
  • Fox & Friends created a graphic that appears to be directly lifted from the logo of a popular video game. The show used the graphic a number of times when discussing the recent uptick of Central American children attempting to cross into the United States. To add insult to injury, the image Fox & Friends lifted is from a video game depicting a fictional city run by a religious zealot who populated his city with individuals who "literally worship America’s Founding Fathers and uses American iconography to rile up his citizens in support of a war with all of the heathens of the world that aren’t a part of his flying city."
  • A state judge in Florida ruled the states newly drawn Congressional map unconstitutional after the state conducted a “secret, organized campaign” to draw the new Congressional boundaries in the decennial redistricting process. The judge ruled that two districts, District 5 and 10, were invalid and had to be redrawn, along with any other districts that would be affected by their redrawing. The judge agreed that the Republican legislature collaborated with conservative and other right-leaning groups to draw the districts in a way that would be beneficial to the Republican party and detrimental to the Democratic party.
  • Representative Don Young has been ordered to repay $60,000 in illegally spent campaign donations he received over a period of twelve years. Young was found to have violated House ethics rules by illegally using campaign funds to go on fifteen trips to hunting lodges during that time. The Ethics Committee found that Young used more than $30,000 of his own campaigns funds and $28,000 in gifts he failed to disclose in his annual financial disclosures.
  • Former Representative Joe Walsh was kicked off his radio show after using a host of slanderous statements and racial slurs while discussing the Washington Redskins name. Walsh claims he was trying to have an 'honest discussion about racist terms,' but his management team thought otherwise and cancelled his show until further notice.
  • McLaughlin & Associates, a polling company Eric Cantor paid over $75,000 to conduct survey's about the congressman's reelection campaign, predicted the congressman would win his primary election by 34 percentage points. Cantor later went on to lose his primary by nearly ten percentage points, meaning the firm's estimate was off by 44 percentage points.
  • Federal investigators are looking into whether Governor Chris Christie's administration committed securities law violations by spending nearly $2 billion of Port Authority funds on a state owned bridge. It is illegal to spend Port Authority funds on state owned infrastructure, but the Christie administration lobbied heavily to classify the bridge as an access road to the Lincoln Tunnel even though they are not connected. Investigators are attempting to determine if Governor Christie violated the Martin Act, which enables the state of New York to file suit if they feel Christie intentionally misled bond holders.
  • Shortly before Blackwater security guards killed seventeen unarmed civilians in Iraq, their top manager in the country got in a fight with a State Department investigator and threatened he could kill the investigator without any facing any consequence. Instead of scolding Blackwater for over reaching, American Embassy officials sided with the company and ordered the State Department investigators to leave Iraq. The investigators then wrote a prophetic report saying Blackwater felt they were above the law and that "management structures in place to manage and monitor our contracts in Iraq have become subservient to the contractors themselves.”
  • An investigation has been launched to find out why a top aid to Mississippi State Senator Chris McDaniel's campaign and two others were locked inside of a courthouse where primary ballots were being counted hours after the building was closed on the night of Mississippi's primary election. The three individuals gave conflicting accounts to officials once they were found to be inside of the courthouse at 2:00 in the morning, which raised a 'red flag' for the Sheriff's department. State Senator McDaniel's campaign released a statement saying that the individuals were let in by uniformed personnel, but the Sheriff's department has refuted that claim.
  • A major political donor under indictment in Utah has admitted to laundering thousands of dollars in donations to now Senator Mike Lee's 2010 campaign for the United States Senate. Businessman Jeremy Johnson informed investigators that John Swallow, Lee's friend and now disgraced former Attorney General of Utah, requested he give thousands of dollars to various individuals who then donated that money to Mike Lee. Senator Lee's office released a statement claiming "at no time during or since the 2010 campaign was Sen. Lee or anyone associated with the Lee campaign aware of any unlawful contributions to the Lee campaign."
  • On May 12, 2014, it was reported that Jarrett had taken time off from Fox for personal reasons. On May 21, 2014, Jarrett was arrested at a bar at the Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport, where he appeared to be intoxicated. He was charged with interfering with a peace officer, which is a misdemeanor.
  • The state of Oklahoma has been ordered to pay $303,333 for the attorney fees of the plaintiffs after a court fight found the states anti-Sharia law unconstitutional. The law was passed overwhelmingly by state voters in 2010, but was immediately challenged in court on the grounds it violated the First Amendment. A federal judge prevented the measure from going into effect and the U.S. Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the ruling. The state has agreed to pay the legal fees over a period of three years.