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Jul 21, 2007

AP News: Fitial and Abramoff's The Ties That Bind...

This is AP News. CNMI Gov. Benigno R. Fitial says he couldn't distance himself from Abramoff because he is a dear good friend and you can't just abandon a dear friend.
WASHINGTON, USA ---- The governor of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) says he is cooperating with the U.S. Justice Department's corruption investigation around jailed Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff, AP reports.

The CNMI also is still trying to retrieve some of the millions it paid Abramoff's firms, said Governor Benigno R. Fitial.

Mr Fitial referred questions about the Justice Department's inquiry to his Los Angeles attorney, Tom Pollack, who didn't immediately return calls for comment.

But Mr Fitial, a one-time Abramoff ally who in past years pushed to extend Abramoff's contract to represent the Marianas, refused to distance himself from the disgraced lobbyist.

“When I have a friend, that friend always remains a friend,” said Governor Fitial, who became House speaker of the Marianas in 2000 after intervention from two former aides to former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay. After becoming speaker, Fitial pushed for Abramoff's contract to continue.

Abramoff, once a powerful behind the scenes figure in Washington, is cooperating with the government's wide-ranging influence-peddling investigation after pleading guilty last year to conspiracy and other charges and admitting to bilking his clients. The investigation already has netted guilty pleas from a dozen Bush administration and congressional aides and others and one former congressman, ex-Republican Rep. Bob Ney.

The scandals were a factor in helping Democrats win control of Congress from the Republicans in last November's elections.

One current member of Congress, Republican John Doolittle is a focus of the investigation. He was another Fitial ally, endorsing him for governor and pushing federal funding on his behalf.

“Doolittle, he's also a friend,” said Mr Fitial.
What do you think?

The Reveler


Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
The Saipan Blogger アンジェロ・ビラゴメズ said...

Fitial should resign for saying that. Who is giving him advice?

knicksgrl0917 said...

hey! i'm going to cali this weekend and won't be back until september...here is the website i was talking about where i made extra summer cash. Later! the website is here

Anonymous said...

Abramoff was found guilty of criminal activity, however...
1. He did provide the service he promised the CNMI, which was basically to ensure a federal takeover of labor and immigration did not happen.
2. As far as we know, he didn't "bilk" the CNMI out of any money. He may have screwed the injuns, but again, he produced in our case.
3. You have to give the Governor credit for integrity. Imagine all of the folks who have now distanced themselves personally from Abramoff, due simply to him being found guilty. At least Fitial has the balls to say he was my friend and he still is. Albeit he should follow such statements with... I don't condone his crimes however.

sloganeer said...

Let's get the bumper stickers ready: Ben Fitial - Loyal to criminals!

rev said...

;-) Anonymous...yeah that's what friends are for and that's just commendable for me, friendship wise. I was asking what you and others think about it....

Anonymous said...

its called-- "Fitial Piety"

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