In case the government hasn't already given you enough reasons to smile, here's one more reason to be happy as fill out Ye Olde 1040: You're helping defray Rep. John Conyers' babysitting and campaigning costs. Comment stalwart Mo informs us that two former staffers have filed ethics complaints against the soft-spoken Michigan Democrat, charging that he had one (a legal adviser) watch his kids at odd hours and the other (chief of staff at Conyers' downriver office) work as a nanny and housesitter. The two also claim they and other staffers were assigned local campaigning duties on House staff time.
The best news of all? Collegial scumbaggery is not dead on the Hill:
Melanie Sloan, who once worked for the congressman herself, says she is not surprised about the allegations or about the apparent lack of response from the House ethics committee.
Sloan now heads the liberal watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. In the case of ethics, she said neither conservatives nor liberals on Capitol Hill are held accountable.
"That's because there's an ethics truce, " Sloan said. "Both parties will deny this, but there is in fact a truce that's been in existence since 1998. And under the terms of the truce nobody will file a complaint against a member of the other party."