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From the Desk of Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton:

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  • wayne
    http://www.judicialwatch.org/ From the Desk of Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton: Dear Friends and Supporters:
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 28, 2006

      From the Desk of Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton:

      Dear Friends and Supporters:

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      JW <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns =
      "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Sues L.A. County to Stop
      Dipping” Payments to Judges

      Judicial Watch filed an important anti-corruption lawsuit this
      week in Los Angeles. On Monday, Judicial Watch sued Los Angeles
      County for allowing individual judges to amass more than $35,000
      annually in cash allowances from the county to pay for benefits
      and perks they are already receiving from the state. (Otherwise
      known as, “double dipping.”) In fact, since 1997, the county has
      paid judges more than $100 million in duplicate benefits.

      How has this colossal waste of taxpayer funds continued for so

      In 1997, the California State Legislature enacted a law providing
      that the State of California would assume sole responsibility for
      funding all court operations, including salaries and benefits
      packages. The intent was to completely eliminate all county funding for

      judges, and replace it with state funding. Seems simple enough.
      The problem is, however, the LA County refuses to stop
      providing benefits to the judges.

      For example, even though judges receive a full benefits package
      from the state, Los Angeles County also provides them $27,324
      annually in cash allowances to purchase on a pre-tax basis
      additional health, life, disability and other benefits. Given that
      there are
      no requirements as to how the money must be spent, judges may
      either purchase the benefits or keep the cash allowance as
      taxable income. One county official told the Los Angeles Times,
      “If they wanted to go to Vegas on it they could.”

      “The payment of ‘local judicial benefits’ by the county serves no
      useful, lawful purpose, provides no additional public benefit, and
      otherwise constitutes an unconscionable waste of taxpayer funds,”
      Judicial Watch argued in its complaint filed with the Superior
      Court for the State of California, County of Los Angeles.

      Of course, given the obvious conflict of interest that would be
      present should a Los Angeles County judge hear this lawsuit,
      Judicial Watch has asked the court to transfer the case to
      another jurisdiction. Stay tuned…

      JW Battles FDA Over Abortion Pill Docs

      On Tuesday, Judicial Watch went before the U.S. Court of Appeals
      for the D.C. Circuit in its lawsuit against the FDA over
      documents related to the abortion pill, RU-486. We’ve already
      managed to force the release of 9,300 pages of records, but the
      FDA continues to withhold an additional 4,000 documents. They
      have also failed to abide by a court order to produce a thorough
      list of the documents being withheld, along with clear reasons as
      to why they refuse to release them.

      Though we do not yet have all of the documents, here is what
      we’ve already uncovered. First, Bill Clinton made the marketing of
      RU-486 his first objective after taking office. His
      administration strong-armed the companies that manufacture the drug to
      them to make it available in the United States. Clinical tests
      showed the drug to be dangerous to the women who take it, causing
      blood clots and internal bleeding, yet the Clinton FDA decided to
      bypass normal safeguards in order to rush the abortion pill to
      market in the months leading up to the elections in 2000.

      The results? At least six women and 560,000 unborn children are
      dead. Countless others women have suffered physical problems
      as a result of taking the drug.

      Even though we’ve uncovered a great deal about Clinton’s reckless
      drive to force the abortion pill on America, we’re still not
      satisfied. If the 9,300 pages the government has released are
      this incriminating, we have to wonder what is in the 4,000 documents
      the government continues to withhold.

      By the way, Judicial Watch lawyer Meredith DiLiberto did an
      exemplary job arguing our case. We hope the court responds and
      order the FDA to stop abusing the open records process. The
      public has a right to know about the political motivations behind the
      RU-486 approval process, as well as the inherent dangers of the
      drug, and the FDA has an obligation to release the information
      regardless of the potential for embarrassment to itself or the
      pro-abortion movement. (Click here for more information on this

      The Clintons and Influence Peddling ? Here They Go Again…

      The New York Times published an article this week about Bill
      Clinton’s special relationship with billionaire businessman Ronald
      Burkle. Clinton has served as an “advisor” to Burkle’s private
      equity firm Yucaipa Companies. Apparently, the arrangement calls
      for Clinton to potentially make tens of millions of dollars
      without investing any money, taking any risks, or putting in much
      This certainly sounds like a sweetheart deal, and one that
      definitely merits investigation. Judicial Watch first raised questions
      this business relationship back in 2002 (click here).

      It seems to me, that any extraordinary profits or sweetheart
      deals given to Bill Clinton, are also given to his wife, Senator Hillary

      Clinton, assuming they have a joint bank account. The logical
      question here is: What does Burkle expect in return for putting tens
      of millions of dollars in Bill and Hillary’s bank account?
      Clinton supposedly advises Yucaipa on investment opportunities and
      stumps for the firm with private investors. Investors must
      realize that investing with Yuciapa means investing with Bill Clinton
      Senator (and future presidential candidate) Hillary Clinton.
      Unsurprisingly, Yucaipa is doing quite well as a result. And so will

      The relationship between Burkle and the Clintons becomes even
      more suspicious when you consider that, as the Times reports,
      Burkle is a “fundraising force” for Senator Clinton. In fact,
      last Friday night, he hosted a fundraiser for her in his Beverly Hills

      But wait, there’s more…

      Ronald Burkle has been linked to the many of the fundraising
      scandals orchestrated by the Clintons. In 1993, Burkle attended a
      trade mission to South Africa with the late Clinton Commerce
      Secretary Ron Brown. As Judicial Watch has been able to prove
      through government documents and sworn testimony, these trade
      missions were nothing more than “pay to play” fundraising
      programs for the Democratic Party. Trade mission participants
      donated large sums of cash to the Democrats ? as much as
      $100,000 ? to attend the taxpayer-financed trips.

      Burkle also participated in an illegal Clinton White House coffee
      fundraiser and “participated” in Clinton’s sleepover fundraising
      program run mainly out of the Lincoln bedroom. He is also a
      major donor to the Clinton Library..to the tune of $5 million to $10
      million. As a result of all this largesse, Burkle’s request for
      a pardon for Michael Milliken was given special consideration by
      President Clinton. (Clinton never went through with the pardon

      Judicial Watch will continue to investigate the Clintons’ curious
      and corrupt relationship with Burkle.

      Until next week…

      Tom Fitton

      Judicial Watch is a non-partisan, educational foundation
      organized under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue code. Judicial

      Watch is dedicated to fighting government and judicial corruption
      and promoting a return to ethics and morality in our nation's
      public life. To make a tax-deductible contribution in support of
      our efforts, click here.
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