When a Long Island, New York, hedge fund manager reached out to his Congressman for help obtaining permits so he could have a fireworks show at his son’s bar mitzvah, he received a request for a $10,000 donation two days later — before the paperwork was secured, according to e-mails.
Now, Rep Tim Bishop is defending himself against allegations he violated house ethics rules, accused of soliciting money in exchange for greasing the wheels of federal bureaucracy.
In e-mails obtained by Politico, Eric Semler called the request from Rep Bishop’s surrogate ‘really gross,’ but said he planned to pay up so the fireworks could go ahead as scheduled.
The political news site reports that Mr Semler asked Rep Bishop, a five-term Democrat, for help with the pyrotechnics on May 21 — five days before his son’s party — because his attempts to work with federal environmental agencies had gone nowhere.
His 3,400-square-foot home in the Hamptons sits near wetlands that are used as nesting grounds by protected species like the piping plover. Several, local, state and federal departments worried that a large fireworks display would harm the nearby wildlife.
The fireworks firm, Fireworks by Grucci, is owned by former Congressman Felix Grucci, a Republican who Rep Bishop unseated in 2002.
Two days after making the request, Mr Semler received an e-mail from Rep Bishop’s daughter Molly, asking for a donation.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2188831/Rep-Tim-Bishop-asked-10K-campaign-contribution-helping-constituent.html#ixzz23eSEX0hk