Harry Reid, you....
Thanks, Reid. I hope you enjoyed that boxing match. The New York Times (with the AP story everyone is running):
WASHINGTON, May 29 (AP) — Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the Democratic leader, accepted free ringside tickets from the Nevada State Athletic Commission to three professional boxing matches while the agency was trying to influence him on the federal regulation of boxing.How many beers and hot dogs did you have whilst reviewing the impact on that industry from 2003 - 2005?
Mr. Reid took the free seats for Las Vegas fights from 2003 to 2005 as he was pressing legislation to increase government oversight of the sport, including the creation of a federal boxing commission that Nevada's agency feared might usurp its authority.
Mr. Reid defended the gifts, saying that they would never influence his position on the bill and that he was simply trying to learn how the legislation might affect an important industry in his home state. "Anyone from Nevada would say, 'I'm glad he is there taking care of the state's No. 1 businesses,' " he said.
Senate ethics rules generally allow lawmakers to accept gifts from federal, state or local governments, but specifically warn against taking such gifts — particularly on multiple occasions — when they may be connected to efforts to influence them.
"Senators and Senate staff should be wary of accepting any gift where it appears that the gift is motivated by a desire to reward, influence or elicit favorable official action," the Senate ethics manual states.