May 31, 2015

Following a segment with former Republican Rep. Tom Davis about former Speaker of the House, Dennis Hastert, and how terribly shocked they were to hear about the charges filed against him this week, Meet the Press host Chuck Todd moved onto his panel discussion on the topic and here's how he started things off.

TODD: When you got to this town, you wanted to hold members of Congress up in high esteem. I can't make the case any more to say "Mama, I want your kids to grow up to be politicians."

After Chris Matthews blathered on in response about what amount of scandal the public will tolerate if politicians actually get something done, baseball analogies and claiming that most of the members of Congress are good wholesome family people, former Bushie Sara Fagen added this.

FAGEN: It creates a viscous cycle for the institution of Congress, which is that more and more of these scandals come out and then fewer and fewer really great quality candidates want to run for office.

TODD: Right

FAGEN: That's really what we're seeing in public office today is, you know, being a member of Congress is no longer honorable in most parts of the country, which is just sad.

So Dennis Hastert, years after leaving Congress getting in trouble for a sex scandal before he was a member of Congress is what's keeping people from running. Really?

Chuck Todd then, almost as a aside, asks Politico's Manu Raju about Hastert's money, as though he's not fully aware already of what the answer is going to be.

TODD: It is and of course we'll have a recurring cycle. Amy and Manu, I want to get to one thing we haven't talked about. How did he get to become so wealthy? And how does a guy who had a net worth of, you know, less than a half a million dollars when he got into Congress end up with a net worth of nearly $12 million?

To which Raju responded, the revolving door and lobbying, of course, which basically got a yawn from Chuck Todd as he allowed Amy Walter to move onto whether we're talking about the victims enough in these sort of cases.

The amount of money it takes to get elected is what prevents most good people from running for office and the rewards after you leave is one of the biggest problems corrupting our legislature, but these clowns want us to believe that the handful of sex scandals are the real problem.


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