Casino Jack Director: “Ralph Reed is a Fraud”

Last week I wrote a post noting how, on the same night that I watched the documentary “Casino Jack and the United States of Money,” Ralph Reed was on Alan Colmes’ radio program defending the work he had done for Jack Abramoff, saying it “was outstanding, I’m proud of it, and it advanced sound public policy.”

It looks like Alex Gibney, the director of the “Casino Jack” documentary, took notice of our post and decided to weigh in on Reed’s claims with a post over at The Atlantic entitled “The Deceptions of Ralph Reed” which adds even more detalis:

Let’s say it plain: Ralph Reed is a fraud … Let’s be clear: there was probably nothing illegal about what Reed did. But, he was engaged in a kind of spiritual fraud: telling his supporters that he was opposed to gambling when, in fact, gambling was making him rich.

Reed still denies that he knew that the millions of dollars paid from him came from casino profits. There are publicly available e-mails that prove that is not so. More to the point is the view of his old business partner, Jack Abramoff. On a visit to see Abramoff in prison, Jack made it clear to me that Reed knew precisely where the money was coming from. Is that credible?

In the Alan Colmes radio show, Reed throws Abramoff under the bus, damning his credibility by noting that Jack is a convicted felon (true), though Reed “loved him and still loves him.” Whether Abramoff feels the same way, he has no motive to lie about dealings with Reed. Having served his time, Abramoff is a pretty good witness to the kind of spiritual corruption that his old partner Reed represents.

Reed correctly notes that he has never been charged with a crime and implies that he had been fully investigated by John McCain’s Senate Committee on Indian Affairs. But the implication is deceptive. According to one very famous, disgraced former lobbyist, Reed was supposed to have been called before McCain’s committee but Karl Rove intervened and pressured McCain not to call Reed.

To Reed, Abramoff committed the unpardonable sin of getting caught, and that’s why Reed prays for him. Well, Abramoff did his time and now seems to be willing to speak the truth. Reed should pray for himself.