Washington's third senator, as he's known, Ted Stevens, has been indicted on seven counts of making false statements as a public official. He is accused of falsely reporting income related to renovations on his Alaska home and to gifts he has received, reports the New York Times.
As we reported in 2006, Stevens is financially backed by some of Washington state's biggest businesses, including the Boeing Co., his largest single benefactor, giving $93,500 to his campaigns since 1989. According to federal election records, when he was re-elected to his seventh term in 2002—he's up again this year, at age 84—about $436,000 of his relatively modest $3.2 million campaign fund came from Anchorage and $220,000 from the Seattle area. That's about 7 percent of his funding from here.
Reports the Times:
Republicans on Capitol Hill were already jittery over a lobbying and influence-peddling scandal related to the lobbyist Jack Abramoff [formerly of Seattle's Preston Gates law firm], who is now in prison. Mr. Stevens’s troubles are not linked to that affair. Instead, they stem from his ties to an oil executive whose company won millions of dollars in federal contracts with the help of Mr. Stevens, whose home in Alaska was almost doubled in size in the renovation project.
For the non-political readers unfamiliar with Sen. Stevens, he's the guy who likes to describe the Internet as a "series of tubes" (see above) and is frequently featured among the clips shown by Jon Stewart on the Daily Show. "Who the fuck is Ted Stevens?" Stewart once asked, then explained he's a senator "who wields power due to his seniority, because unlike in the real world, in the Senate, the older you get, the more people have to listen to your crazy ramblings."