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Ted Stevens was found guilty today of having “knowingly failed to list on Senate disclosure forms the receipt of several gifts and tens of thousands of dollars worth of remodeling work on his home in Girdwood, Alaska.” He could be sentenced to jail time and may have a hard time winning re-election, but no matter what happens, there’s a bit of good news for Stevens too: he can hold on to his congressional pension.
The “Honest Leadership and Open Government Act” that passed last year stripped members of congress of receiving pension benefits if convicted of certain crimes, such as bribery or perjury. But it didn’t include violations of the False Statements Act, so Stevens would get a monthly check even in the extremely unlikely even that he gets a prison sentence. Stevens’ pension as of next year would come to about $10,000 a month.
About a score of convicted lawmakers are already receiving federal pensions.
More from Ken Silverstein:
Perspective — October 23, 2013, 8:00 am
How pro-oil Louisiana politicians have shaped American environmental policy
Postcard — October 16, 2013, 8:00 am
A trip to one of the properties at issue in Louisiana’s oil-pollution lawsuits
Number of free condoms handed out by the Brazilian government in advance of Carnival this year:
The best way to measure happiness is simply to ask people how happy they are.
Following three weeks of clashes between protesters and government forces that killed at least 17 people, Venezuelan president Nicolás Maduro announced a two-day extension of Carnival. “Happiness will conquer the embittered,” he said during an appearance at a recreation center.
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“American politics has often been an arena for angry minds.”