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Bishop shuns truth, CNN, about scholarships

By   /   September 29, 2010  /   Comments

Editor’s note: On Tuesday night, CNN anchor Anderson Cooper focused his staff’s efforts on getting as much information as possible about U.S. Rep. Sanford Bishop cronyistic use of Congressional Black Caucus Foundation scholarships. Here is  transcript of the show:

COOPER: Well, when Republican candidate Christine O’Donnell suddenly stopped talking to the national media, we made sure to point that out. So it’s only fair, we thought tonight, that we point out the same thing when Democratic congressman refuses to talk about a scandal he is embroiled in. We’ll promise to keep you updated on it.

Now, we’re talking about Georgia Democratic Congressman Sanford Bishop. That’s him. He was caught giving Congressional Black Caucus Foundation scholarship money meant for needy kids to his stepdaughter and his wife’s niece. Seven scholarships in all between 2003 and 2005.

He says he’s done nothing wrong. He reportedly repaid the money. But on Friday, the Associated Press reported four more questionable scholarships had surfaced. All four reportedly went to people with close connections to Congressman Bishop and his family.

The congressman claims the awards met the rules of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation. An attorney for the foundation that oversees the scholarship fund says the fund was established to benefit disadvantaged, needy kids.

So we’d like to ask Congressman Bishop how that squares with what he did. But he declined our invitation to come on the program on Friday. We tried again yesterday, and his office told us he’d be campaigning in Georgia today. But when we called his Georgia campaign office, we were told he didn’t have any campaign events today. They said that he was actually in Washington. So then we called another staffer in Washington who said, “Nope, he’s actually back in Georgia.” You probably see where this is going.

When Joe Johns called back again to point out all the mixed signals, here’s what he found.


JOE JOHNS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: We’re calling Tim Turner now, the Sanford campaign manager.

TIM TURNER, SANFORD CAMPAIGN MANAGER (via phone): Tim Turner speaking.

JOHNS: Hey, Tim, it’s Joe Johns with CNN. How are you doing?

TURNER: All right. How are you doing, sir?

JOHNS: Good, good. We’re doing a story on trying to catch up with the congressman. I was just wondering if you could tell us whether the congressman is in Georgia or in Washington, and if there’s a chance we can maybe interview him.

TURNER: He’s in Washington. and I don’t know what his schedule is today.

JOHNS: Now that we know he’s in Washington, perhaps we’ll go over to the Capitol and see if we can get a hold of him.

Fourth floor. Congressman Bishop’s office is 2429. We’re going to go and check it.

Hello, anybody home? Is Congressman Bishop around? Hey. Looking for Mr. McCray.


JOHNS: Or congressman Bishop. You think he’ll talk to us later?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: His schedule is fully booked for the rest of the day.

JOHNS: All right. Has he talked to anybody about the scholarship business?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He is unavailable and…

JOHNS: Ask him to give me a call, will you? All right. Thanks a lot.

So there’s simply no way of telling whether Congressman Bishop is here. His staff says he’s not available but not volunteering any information about where he might be. The staff says he’s working all day, but there are no votes on the House floor. It’s pretty clear Congressman Bishop doesn’t want to talk to us.


COOPER: We just want to ask him some very basic questions, Joe. I guess you can’t just camp out at his office, huh?

JOHNS: No. I mean, you can’t camp out inside his office. You can’t camp out outside his office. There are a lot of rules to covering the Congress, and it’s the Congress, of course, that makes the rules.

COOPER: No doubt about that.

You know, he’s held this seat for almost two decades. Do you think — I mean, is this hurting his race? He’s in a race right now, obviously.

JOHNS: He’s definitely getting attacked with it, and he’s got a clear advantage. It’s a majority or almost majority African-American district.

He’s running against a guy named Mike Keown, who’s a state representative. The thing about this is right around April to June, Keown got a whole lot of money infused into his campaign, and now he’s got some Tea Party support. So Bishop is a lot more vulnerable than he was last time around, Anderson.

COOPER: Well, again, we extend the invitation to the congressman any night. We’re around. We’re here every night.

Joe, thanks very much.

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  1. http://www.albanyherald.com/home/headlines/103800634.html?storySection=comments


    On September 25th, 2010 Sanford Bishop along with a number of other candidates arrived at a relatively “safe” crowd in Albany, GA. Sanford Bishop, who was scheduled to speak first, spoke next last due to arriving late. The “town hall” was really more of a hearing of platforms without an established opportunity for the public to ask questions to the candidates. When it came to Sanford Bishop’s speech, it strongly echoed a recent Kiwani’s Club speech where Bishop touted his “Bringing Home The Bacon”.

    However, former GOP Grady County Chairman Jason Sellars, currently of Bainbridge GA, approached Sanford Bishop after the meeting of approximately 50 to 75 people was adjourned and asked the following poignant questions.

    First question to Sanford Bishop:

    Did you vote to support US Aid Abroad that went to support Planned Parenthood overseas?

    Sanford Bishop’s answer was that he supported U.S. Aid abroad in several instances. Mr. Sellars then explained that he was a Native American,and a Disabled Veteran and that Planned Parenthood was a derivative of the American Eugenics Society who has as its mission the eradication of Native American, Black, deformed and disabled lineages from society.

    When pressed on the Planned Parenthood issue and how Planned Parenthood is a derivative of the American Eugenics Society, Sanford Bishop denied supporting it. Mr. Sellars then pressed Sanford on the fact his vote supported killing black babies overseas and that it is on record. Again, Mr. Bishop denied ita to which Mr. Sellars responded that his vote is on record proving the opposite.

    The second question dealt with GM and the recent controversy over the taxpayer owned company getting involved in political races. GM, who has a political action committee called GM PAC, has a member on the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation to which Bishop is connected to and which has recently been involved in a major scholarship scandal. GM has been reported to give thousands to the CBC, an organization currently under scrutiny for the corruption coming to light after several of its members have been involved in one scandal or another. The CBC has also given to the Sanford Bishop campaign, which Sanford Bishop denied. When pressed on the issue, Sanford Bishop, who previously stated that GM has a political action committee, stated that GM can not be involved in politics. Mr. Sellars then responded by saying, “So what do you call GM’s ‘political action’ committee”?

    With Bishop’s aide trying to intervene in the conversation, Mr. Sellars asked one last question which raised an additional new ethical and nepotism issue involving federal earmarked dollars. Mr. Sellars asked Sanford Bishop if he earmarked funds to go to the Urban League of Greater Columbus. Bishop answered, “Yes”. Mr. Sellars then asked if he knew who the CEO was? Mr. Bishop responded, “Reginald Pugh”. At this time Mr. Sellars dropped the bomb “Isn’t Reginald Pugh the husband of your campaign treasurer, Evelyn Turner-Pugh?” Bishop’s response was, “What does that matter?” Mr. Sellars, shocked by the audacity of the comment and the unwillingness to show any sort of conviction, responded by saying, “It is a conflict of interest! You awarded an earmark to an organization who’s CEO is the husband of your campaign treasurer!!! It’s a blatant conflict of interest!”

    After this incident, a democratic reporter from the Albany Herald pressed Mr. Sellars by asking him if he was against a woman’s right to chose, to which Mr. Sellars responded by saying “I am against black genocide overseas!” Mr. Sellars had become outraged that Sanford Bishop, who touted his “Christian” values and “being blessed by God” while stating that he “can deliver” to the 2nd district through earmarks while our country is bankrupt just because he sits on appropriation committees and while his vote is supportive of genocide through infanticide with taxpayer dollars, was too much to handle to not allow a little passion to come out when speaking to the reporter with the Albany Herald who was pressing him on his stance on the abortion issue.

    The reporter asked that doesn’t federal law permit abortion here? Mr. Sellars stated that federal law conflicts within itself. Mr. Sellars responded strongly by additional questions towards his stance by stating, “You talk about a woman’s right to chose. What about a man’s right to be involved? He is a contributor too. You want me to tell you a personal experience? When I was in Afghanistan fighting for our country, my wife got a genetic test that showed she was a carrier for cystic fibrosis. The doctor’s were telling her to abort the child while I was fighting in a war!!! What about my rights!!! My wife kept the child and we have two beautiful healthy children with nothing wrong with them, but if she had of listened my child would be dead right now! What about my rights as a man?” The reporter was essentially silenced. At this time, Mr. Sellars walked out, but not after exposing Sanford Bishop’s knowledge of the additional interconnections and ethical dilemmas that are plaguing the congressman.


    Taxpayer funded abortion through U.S. Aid Abroad:


    This information was provided to the blog by Jason Sellars who researched the information. Voted NO on banning Family Planning funding in US aid abroad. (May 2001)http://www.ontheissues.org/GA/Sanford_Bishop.htm http://www.thepostsearchlight.com/2010/06/25/bishops-pro-abortionist-voting-record/(Bishop was listed as 30% Pro-Life).

    GM: GM, taxpayer owned by 61%, GM has a member on the CBC foundation, and has donated to the CBC. Sanford Bishop is a member. The CBC PAC has given to Sanford Bishop.

    Go here to see Sanford Bishop’s name: http://www.cbcfinc.org/cbc/cbc-members.html

    (I believe you can find the member of GM on the foundation here too.)

    Go to the link below to see the CBC’s contribution. http://www.opensecrets.org/races/contrib.php?cycle=2010&id=GA02

    Go here to see the article on GM: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/04/AR2010080407086.html

    Urban League of Greater Columbus Earmarks:



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