Senator Dianne Feinstein’s Conflict of Interest

Sen Dianne FeinsteinBy Stanford Matthews
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This blog has been quiet on Senator Dianne Feinstein for a while. That time should end right about now. If for nothing other than frustration. After echoing sentiments from a number of sources that should have some clout, it appears no one is quite ready to attend to the business of calling DiFi to account for her questionable actions.
How about a little review to get this thing restarted.

A short visit to Senator Feinstein’s website was unsuccessful in locating any rebuttal statements to the allegations of conflict of interest in her involvement with the awarding of military contracts and her husband’s involvement in defense contracting including companies that benefit from DiFi’s influence. The following releases are what we found in the first couple of pages on a search with the term ‘ethics’:

Restoring Public Confidence in Elected Officials

As Chairman of the Senate Rules and Administration Committee, I had the privilege of managing debate on the first bill brought to the Senate floor in the 110th Congress – S.1, the Legislative Transparency and Accountability Act. This landmark e…

Ethics, Lobbying & Election Reform

The time has come for a change in the way Congress does business. At the beginning of the 110th Congress, I assumed the Chairmanship of the Senate Rules and Administration Committee and made ethics reform and election reform my top two priorities….

Senate Approves Feinstein-Rockefeller Amendment to Require Accountability and Transparency for Classified Earmarks

Washington, DC – The U.S. Senate today approved the amendment to the comprehensive ethics reform bill filed by U.S. Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and John Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) that seeks to bring accountability and transparency to classified…

Press Release from Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Incoming Rules Committee Chairman Senator Feinstein Calls for Senate Passage of Ethics Reform Package, Pledges New Era of Bipartisanship and Transparency

Washington, DC – As the incoming Chairman of the Senate Rules Committee, U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today spoke on the Floor of the U.S. Senate to discuss the upcoming debate of the ethics, lobbying, earmark reform legislation – …

Press Release from Monday, January 8, 2007

Senator Feinstein to Become First Woman Chairman of the Senate Rules and Administration Committee

Washington, DC – In the wake of the Democratic takeover of the United States Senate, U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein is poised to become the first woman Chairman of the Senate Rules and Administration Committee. Senator Feinstein will also retain h…

Press Release from Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Senate Committee Approves Feinstein Measure to Reform Earmark Process

Washington, DC – The Senate Rules Committee today unanimously approved a proposal by U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) to require 60 votes for any provision (earmark or otherwise) added to conference report that is not contained in the origin…

Press Release from Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Dirty Money?The above releases are intended to convince the reader that Senator Dianne Feinstein is a fine example of honesty and integrity whose only interest is in serving her constituents. No release was found to deny the claims of conflict of interesst. In stark contrast to the puff pieces above are the more down to earth reports indicating their is a reasonable possibility that not all is well with Senator Feinstein’s activities nor those of her husband. And it would not be crazy to assume they are not the only two that could be involved since little goes on in a vacuum in Washington and other venues in the game of politics. Read on.

Senator Feinstein’s Iraq Conflict

As a member of the Military Construction Appropriations subcommittee, Sen. Feinstein voted for appropriations worth billions to her husband’s firms

By Peter Byrne

IN THE November 2006 election, the voters demanded congressional ethics reform. And so, the newly appointed chairman of the Senate Rules Committee, Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., is now duly in charge of regulating the ethical behavior of her colleagues. But for many years, Feinstein has been beset by her own ethical conflict of interest, say congressional ethics experts.

As chairperson and ranking member of the Military Construction Appropriations subcommittee (MILCON) from 2001 through the end of 2005, Feinstein supervised the appropriation of billions of dollars a year for specific military construction projects. Two defense contractors whose interests were largely controlled by her husband, financier Richard C. Blum, benefited from decisions made by Feinstein as leader of this powerful subcommittee.

Army contract for Feinstein’s husband

Blum is a director of firm that will get up to $600 million
David R. Baker, Chronicle Staff Writer
Tuesday, April 22, 2003URS Corp., a San Francisco planning and engineering firm partially owned by California Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s husband, landed an Army contract Monday worth up to $600 million.

The award to help with troop mobilization, weapons systems training and anti-terrorism efforts is the latest in a string of plum defense jobs snared by URS. In February, the firm won an army engineering and logistics contract that could bring in $3.1 billion during the next eight years.

Feinstein Conflict Allegations ‘Aren’t Going Away,’ Watchdogs Say

Fred Lucas
( – Sen. Dianne Feinstein may have had as much of a financial interest in two defense contractors as her husband who controlled them, according to California law.The state’s “community property law” could be relevant at a time when the senior Democratic senator from California is facing allegations of a conflict of interest and growing calls for an inquiry.

Feinstein stepped down late last year from the Senate Appropriations Committee’s subcommittee on military construction (MILCON) after five years on the panel. The subcommittee was charged with reviewing construction projects, some of which were awarded to the Perini and URS firms owned by Feinstein’s husband, Richard Blum.

InvestigateThese are just a few of the reports. This is just the beginning of an effort by this blog to keep the light focused on Senator Feinstein. There are watchdog groups and media outlets that show up in searches but no content can be found on the articles. There are political party sites that mention these allegations and yet hearings, investigations or even loud noises from the main stream media are not forthcoming. That seems a bit odd. Are we all supposed to believe there is nothing to the allegations? That would be more convincing if something more than a lame excuse was offered as an explanation. After contacting one Senator, I was offered the ‘there is nothing to this and everything is above board’ speech. Sorry, not buying it on that flimsy excuse. We want to see docs, lots of docs and validated, verified and proof positive evidence of the contracts Feinstein was involved in and any that were related to her husband’s and her business interests or any other entity that stood to provide them with improper gains.

Stay tuned. With any luck at all the results of a few more well placed inquiries and discussions with reporters, etc., might get something moving after all.