Democrats Push Report Linking Sessions to Disgraced Financier

Posted December 31, 2009 at 9:46am

He’s heavily favored to win re-election in 2010, but National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Pete Sessions of Texas continues to be a frequent target of criticism by his partisan opposites at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.The DCCC released a statement Wednesday whacking Sessions, who represents the Dallas-area 32nd district, for links to Allen Stanford, the financier who’s been accused of fraud.The DCCC is circulating a Dec. 27 Miami Herald story about Stanford’s ties to Members of Congress — including Sessions, who sent Stanford a strongly supportive e-mail message right after the Securities and Exchange Commission in February entered a temporary restraining order against Stanford in federal court. The government alleges that Stanford engaged in a multibillion-dollar Ponzi scheme.According to the Center for Responsive Politics, employees of Stanford Financial gave $24,275 to Sessions’ re-election campaign in the 2004 cycle, when Sessions defeated then-Rep. Martin Frost (D) following an unusual mid-decade redistricting in Texas.Stanford over the years has donated large sums of money to both parties, including contributions to President Barack Obama during the 2008 presidential campaign and to Sen. Chris Dodd (D-Conn.), the Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee chairman who faces a difficult re-election bid in 2010. Stanford made six-figure donations to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee in 2002, when the national party committees were still permitted to accept large soft money contributions. He gave $28,500 to the NRCC in May 2008 and $10,000 to the DCCC in May 2003.The DCCC statement also drew a link between Sessions’ expression of support of Stanford and his opposition earlier this month to an overhaul of the nation’s financial regulatory system. The House passed the bill on Dec. 11, with 27 Democrats joining all Republicans in voting “no.—Democratic Lawyer Grier Raggio is challenging Sessions in the 2010 electionDavid Smith, a corporate financial analyst, has said he will take on Sessions in the March 2 Republican primary.