Loose Lips

Are You Sure About That, Eleanor?

Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton said today that she doesn't think any of the donations she's received from Jeff Thompson, the man allegedly behind Vince Gray's shadow campaign, are suspect.

"I don't have any reason to believe that any of the contributions were illegal," Norton said today on WPFW's D.C. Politics. Yesterday President Barack Obama and Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley returned or gave away Thompson-related money following the allegation in federal court last week that he is at the center of a straw donor scheme. But Norton, who said she's received money from Thompson her entire political career, said she has no plans to return any of his donations.

"I don't think we have any allegation of illegal contributions or straw contributions or the kinds of contributions that are illegal," she says.

Oops. Norton ought to try reading the court records filed as part of Thompson associate Jeanne Clarke Harris' guilty plea on campaign corruption charges. In them, Harris admits that in 2008, she gave $14,650 to federal candidates that were really straw donations made with Thompson's money. Norton received $2,300 from Harris that year. Whether or not it was a straw donation is impossible to tell from campaign records, which show that Harris' personal giving to federal candidates and committees that year was $19,250. That means that of the five candidates who got $2,300 donations from Harris that year, two of them might have been received the legitimately, and Norton might have been one of those two.

But—and it's a big but—the same day that Harris gave Norton a $2,300 contribution in 2008, Thompson also donated $2,300. And on top of that, five of his employees or people related to his employees gave $2,300 donations as well. That's not definite proof of any hanky panky, but it certainly should be enough to give Norton pause that all of her donations were legal.

LL's got a call into Norton's spokesman and will update as needed.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

  • Ward 4 Voter

    It's time for D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes-Norton to go. She's been in the office too long and she looks old and tired. We need some new energetic blood on Capitol Hill and someone who's responsive to their constituency.

  • name

    Even worse, it was STOLEN money. Money that should have been returned to tax payers or spent on the medical needs of DC residents.

    Eleanor, return that money to DC coffers so that it can be used properly!

    Everything that man did was crooked.

  • http://Www.Majors4DC.blogspot.com Bruce Majors, Libertarian for Congress

    Eleanor raises $200,000 every election cycle, most of it from PACS, government sector unions, real estate interests, including privately held firms not easily researched, to run unopposed. Over half of her money comes from PACS not individuals.

    Like most independent candidates I am collecting thousands of signatures just to get on the ballot and run against her, one of the ways the two major parties and incumbents have protected themselves since the last Great Depression, when they enacted ballot access laws to wipe out rising socialist parties that threatened to Nader the Democrats in the 30s - or simply displace them. Fortunately I am over half way to the needed number.

    I will be doing well to raise a tenth of that, and I will be forced to spend half of it just on my ballot drive. But other than my own self financing, I may have no donors over $500, and my typical donor is a drug decriminalization reformer or an alternative media journalist, not someone currying for real estate favors or building contracts.

  • Here We Go Again

    Finally! Norton getting burned for those comments about Gray! Hold her feet to the fire because she hasn't done a DAMN thing for DC except get laughed at by other members of congress!

  • RealDC

    It is time for this old bag to go! I mean, really, what have she done? She has the smallest congressional district in the country and she does not leave the hill. She has no vote on the floor, she has no vote in committee, her influence on the hill is zero!

    She is way past her time! DC will never get anything in Congress with the red headed battle axe rambling about! For Real!!

  • mizwillis

    @ Mr. Majors: LET'S TALK!!!
    Looks like Ms. Holmes-Norton has forgotten from whence she came. The lack of insight is telling, unless she was coerced to call for the step-down from some hypocrital very cloistered closet....or something; like 2 of the others requesting same. One thing I can say about Catania, ain't no shame in his game. You gotta respect him for that if nothing else.

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  • Reeelz

    Norton and Gray both need to go NOW! We need to simply clean house on every election day.

    Norton and her delirious rants are just another reason the District continues to be the butt of all jokes.

    She's so out of touch that she continues to tout the city as the "Chocolate City!"

    Someone please take this old horse with a terrible hairstyle out to pasture already.

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  • http://Www.Majors4DC.blogspot.com Bruce Majors
  • Hmmmmmm

    But PEPCO throws a big Black Caucus Party for Norton every year. What will we do without that?

  • councilworker

    everyone on the council received money from jeff thompson...adrian fenty received money from him plenty of times as well.

  • https://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/stracuzziforcongress/ Natale “Lino” Stracuzzi

    Delegate Norton. does not know why she should have to return any of the donations she's received from Jeff Thompson. Come on! it's based on the principle. Jeff Thompson, the man allegedly behind Vince Gray's shadow campaign. That's why President Obama, Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley and former Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine did. That's why we should Elect Natale "Lino" Stracuzzi over incumbent Delegate Eleanor Holmes - Norton.

  • http://toohottohold eugene

    As the "Puppet master" of DC politics, Eleanor knows better! There are a lot of salaries, jobs and colored folks welfare on the line...Again, she remains on the darkside of things..."Pride always comes itself before the fall"...she continues to lack vision and vitality. Eleanor needs to get in line or get the hell off the line!

  • mizwillis

    @#11: Sorry Ms(?) N"L"S: Mr. Majors @ #8 beat you to it.
    We're going to research the possibility of working with him. Some say EH-N HAD to go at Vince like that, but we just dont see it. At least none of the people in our Blog Mob. We are 50 strong and growing. Why they chose me to speak for them I don't know. But this is a blast. We'll be in touch, Mr. Majors.

  • https://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/stracuzziforcongress/ Natale “Lino” Stracuzzi

    I see they are no candidates forum slated for the District of Columbia. Candidates that are listed on the ballot for November's General Election why is that?. Is that big money at work in DC?

  • http://Www.brucemajorsdc.com Bruce Majors

    Delegate Norton and her party damage DC with corruption and runaway spending.  They send kids to jail for selling pot or to endless foreign wars.  They built an expensive convention center and give high salaries to government administrators, but we get bad schools and old power lines that leave people without power for days.  She brought you problems; she can't fix them.  She turns a blind eye to the crimes of their friends.  A vote for me creates a new party for more freedom of choice for all DC residents.

  • https://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/stracuzziforcongress/ Natale Lino Stracuzzi

    Ms Norton, Right now the forecasts are predicting Sandy will pass thru DC Monday/Tuesday. So our Tuesday night forum was cancelled. So our new date is Thursday Nov 1, from 6 to 9 pm. Or are you just chicken, because a automobile technician/ Furniture Rep, will claim victory over you again.

    Thank You
    Lino Stracuzzi

    Sent: Saturday, October 27, 2012 1:48 PM
    Subject: Stracuzzi Challenges Eleanor Holmes Norton to Face-to-face Debate

    Stracuzzi Challenges Eleanor Holmes Norton to Face-to-face Debate.

    Is Forum-shy Incumbent Congresswoman Really "Chicken"?

    During a Town Hall meeting hosted by incumbent Delegate to the US House of Representatives, Eleanor Holmes Norton, at the Wilson Building on the evening of October 25, Natale "Lino" Stracuzzi, the DC Statehood Green Party candidate for the office that she currently holds, invited her in front of the public, Park Service, Press and her staffers to appear with him at a forum to be held on November 1 at The American Islamic Heritage Museum. Stracuzzi went on to suggest that if she failed to appear that it might be because she is "chicken".

    Stracuzzi has attended every candidate's forum that has been held during these last several months of campaigning, but not once has he been able engage in a spirited debate with Delegate Norton about issues that matter to DC residents because she has not bothered to appear at any them.

    The last time that these two candidates appeared together and held such a discussion -- at a debate held on Monday, August 9, 2010, during the Ward 8 Federal & Mayoral Candidates Forum at Saint Elizabeth's Hospital in Washington, DC -- then-DC Statehood Green Party candidate Stracuzzi claimed victory over incumbent DC Delegate Norton, a claim that she has never bothered to deny.

    Stracuzzi looks forward to a rematch with Delegate Norton at the forum on:


    CANDIDATE FORUM THURSDAY Nov 1, from 6 to 9 p.m.

    The American Islamic Heritage Museum, 2315 Martin Luther King Ave., SE

    and believes that DC voters could not help but benefit from the free-wheeling debate that is sure to take place.

    Stracuzzi invites the press to attend the Thursday night forum and record whether Delegate Norton will demonstrate her respect for the people she is supposed to represent in Congress by showing up and defending her incumbency.

    Stracuzzi is ready, willing and eager to debate with Norton about issues important to DC citizens. But just one thing can stop that from happening: Will Delegate Norton turn up? Or will she turn chicken?

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