The Political Graveyard: A Database of American History
Politicians in Trouble or Disgrace

Politicians in Trouble or Disgrace: Influence and Lobbying
Offenses involving lobbyists and influence peddling

See the trouble and disgrace main page, as well as the FAQ and the Political Graveyard privacy policy, for important explanations and disclaimers.

in chronological order

  Hiram Bingham (1875-1956) — of New Haven, New Haven County, Conn.; Salem, New London County, Conn. Born in Honolulu, Island of Oahu, Honolulu County, Hawaii, November 19, 1875. Republican. Explorer; delegate to Republican National Convention from Connecticut, 1916 (alternate), 1920 (alternate), 1924, 1928 (member, Resolutions Committee), 1932, 1936 (vice-chair, Resolutions Committee); Presidential Elector for Connecticut, 1916; colonel in the U.S. Army during World War I; Lieutenant Governor of Connecticut, 1923-25; Governor of Connecticut, 1925; U.S. Senator from Connecticut, 1924-33; defeated, 1932; censured by the U.S. Senate on November 4, 1929, for employing a paid lobbyist as his chief clerk. Member, Freemasons. Died in Washington, D.C., June 6, 1956 (age 80 years, 200 days). Interment at Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Va.
  Relatives: Son of Rev. Hiram Bingham (1831-1908) and Clara Minerva (Brewster) Bingham (1834-1903); married, November 20, 1900, to Alfreda Mitchell; married, June 28, 1937, to Suzanne Carroll Hill; father of Hiram Bingham Jr., Alfred Mitchell Bingham and Jonathan Brewster Bingham; second cousin five times removed of Benjamin Huntington; third cousin once removed of Bela Edgerton and Heman Ticknor; third cousin thrice removed of Matthew Griswold (1714-1799), Jonathan Brace, Joshua Coit, Augustus Seymour Porter, Samuel Lathrop and Peter Buell Porter; fourth cousin of Alfred Peck Edgerton and Joseph Ketchum Edgerton; fourth cousin once removed of Elijah Abel, Calvin Fillmore, William Woodbridge, Henry Meigs, Isaac Backus, Samuel George Andrews, Martin Olds, Harrison Blodget and Henry Titus Backus.
  Political families: Kellogg-Adams-Seymour-Chapin family of Connecticut and New York; Waterman-Huntington family of Connecticut; Wolcott-Wadsworth family of Connecticut; Wolcott-Griswold-Packwood-Brandegee family of Connecticut; Hosmer-Griswold-Parsons family of Middletown, Connecticut (subsets of the Three Thousand Related Politicians).
  See also congressional biography — Govtrack.us page — National Governors Association biography — Wikipedia article — NNDB dossier — Find-A-Grave memorial
  Tracy W. Southworth — of Monroe County, Mich. Democrat. Member of Michigan state house of representatives from Monroe County; elected 1930, 1932; arrested in June 1934, along with a lobbyist, Al Tobin, based on an allegation of bribery in connection with helping a trucking company obtain a license; four marked bills were found in his possession when he was arrested; he claimed the lobbyist had merely made him a loan of $100. Burial location unknown.
  Harry E. Mackenzie — of Bethel, Fairfield County, Conn. Republican. Alternate delegate to Republican National Convention from Connecticut, 1928, 1932, 1936. Charged in May, 1938, along with Mayor T. Frank Hayes and 25 others, with conspiracy to cheat and defraud the city of Waterbury of more than a million dollars; admitted that he received large fees for lobbying, and paid half back as a kickback to the other conspirators; pleaded guilty in November 1938, and testified against the other defendants; sentenced to nine months in jail. Burial location unknown.
  Andrew Jackson May (1875-1959) — also known as Andrew J. May — of Prestonsburg, Floyd County, Ky. Born near Langley, Floyd County, Ky., June 24, 1875. Democrat. Lawyer; Floyd County Attorney, 1901-09; U.S. Representative from Kentucky, 1931-47 (10th District 1931-33, at-large 1933-35, 7th District 1935-47); defeated, 1928 (10th District), 1946 (7th District). Baptist. Member, Freemasons. In 1943, he was briefed about the flaws in the Japanese anti-submarine munitions; he revealed this information to the press, and hence to the Japanese, who quickly improved their depth charges. After the war, this indiscretion was estimated to have cost the U.S. ten submarines and 800 men. Convicted, on July 3, 1947, on charges of accepting bribes for his influence in the award of munitions contracts during World War II; served nine months in prison; received a full pardon from President Harry S. Truman in 1952. Died in Prestonsburg, Floyd County, Ky., September 6, 1959 (age 84 years, 74 days). Interment at Mayo Cemetery, Prestonsburg, Ky.
  Presumably named for: Andrew Jackson
  Relatives: Son of Dorcus (Conley) May (1830-1915) and John May (1832-1920); uncle of William Harvey May (1908-1986).
  See also congressional biography — Govtrack.us page
  William Marshall Boyle Jr. (1903-1961) — also known as William M. Boyle, Jr.; Bill Boyle — of Kansas City, Jackson County, Mo. Born in Leavenworth, Leavenworth County, Kan., February 2, 1903. Democrat. Lawyer; Director, Kansas City Police, 1939; Chairman of Democratic National Committee, 1949-51; investigated in 1951 by the Senate Investigating Committee over his acceptance of fees from the American Lithifold Corporation of St. Louis, in return for using his influence as Democratic national chair to obtain loans for the company from the U.S. Reconstruction Finance Corporation; claimed to have been vindicated, but ultimately resigned under fire. Irish ancestry. Died in Washington, D.C., August 30, 1961 (age 58 years, 209 days). Burial location unknown.
  Relatives: Son of Clara Boyle; married to Genevieve Hayde.
  Richard Thomas Hanna (1914-2001) — also known as Richard T. Hanna; "The Little Leprechaun" — of Fullerton, Orange County, Calif.; Anaheim, Orange County, Calif. Born in Kemmerer, Lincoln County, Wyo., June 9, 1914. Democrat. Served in the U.S. Navy during World War II; lawyer; member of California state assembly, 1956-62; while in the Assembly, he helped bring about the establishment of the University of California at Irvine and California State University at Fullerton; delegate to Democratic National Convention from California, 1960, 1964; U.S. Representative from California 34th District, 1963-74; resigned 1974. Member, Veterans of Foreign Wars; American Legion; Lions; Elks. In the 1970s, he received payments of about $200,000 from Korean businessman Tongsun Park in what became known as the "Koreagate" influence buying scandal; pleaded guilty; sentenced to 6-30 months in federal prison; served one year. Died in Tryon, Polk County, N.C., June 9, 2001 (age 87 years, 0 days). Cremated; ashes scattered in North Atlantic Ocean.
  See also congressional biography — Govtrack.us page — Wikipedia article — Find-A-Grave memorial
  Otto Ernest Passman (1900-1988) — also known as Otto E. Passman — of Monroe, Ouachita Parish, La. Born near Franklinton, Washington Parish, La., June 27, 1900. Democrat. Served in the U.S. Navy during World War II; furniture business; U.S. Representative from Louisiana 5th District, 1947-77; delegate to Democratic National Convention from Louisiana, 1948, 1956, 1960. Baptist. Member, American Legion; Freemasons; Scottish Rite Masons; Knights Templar; Shriners. Charged in 1978 with accepting $200,000 from Korean businessman Tongsun Park, in what became known as the "Koreagate" influence buying scandal; also charged with tax evasion; tried and found not guilty. Died in Monroe, Ouachita Parish, La., August 13, 1988 (age 88 years, 47 days). Interment at Mulhearn Memorial Park Cemetery, Monroe, La.
  Relatives: Son of Ed Passman and Pheriby (Carrier) Passman; married to Willie Bateman.
  Cross-reference: Camille F. Gravel, Jr.
  See also congressional biography — Govtrack.us page — Wikipedia article
  Mario Biaggi (1917-2015) — of Bronx, Bronx County, N.Y. Born in Manhattan, New York County, N.Y., October 26, 1917. Police officer; U.S. Representative from New York, 1969-88 (24th District 1969-73, 10th District 1973-83, 19th District 1983-88); defeated, 1988 (Republican), 1992 (Democratic primary); delegate to Democratic National Convention from New York, 1972, 1980, 1984; Conservative candidate for mayor of New York City, N.Y., 1973. Catholic. Italian ancestry. Indicted in 1987 on federal charges that he had accepted bribes from former Brooklyn political boss Meade Esposito in in return for influence on federal contracts for a Brooklyn ship-repair company; convicted on September 22, 1987 of obstructing justice and accepting illegal gratuities; sentenced to prison and fined. Tried in 1988 on federal racketeering charges in connection with the Wedtech Corporation; convicted on August 4, 1988 on 15 felony counts. Resigned from Congress following the Wedtech conviction; served more than two years in prison. Died in Bronx, Bronx County, N.Y., June 24, 2015 (age 97 years, 241 days). Interment at Gate of Heaven Cemetery, Hawthorne, N.Y.
  Relatives: Married to Marie Wassil (1918-1997).
  Campaign slogan (1973): "He wins, you win."
  Campaign slogan (1973): "He's right for what's wrong with New York."
  See also congressional biography — Govtrack.us page — NNDB dossier — Find-A-Grave memorial
  Meade Henry Esposito (1909-1993) — also known as Meade H. Esposito; Amadeo Henry Esposito — of Brooklyn, Kings County, N.Y. Born in Brooklyn, Kings County, N.Y., December 28, 1909. Democrat. Delegate to Democratic National Convention from New York, 1964; vice-president, Lafayette National Bank, 1965; insurance broker; leader of Kings County Democratic Party, 1969-83. Catholic. Italian ancestry. Member, NAACP. Indicted in 1987 on federal charges that he had given bribes to U.S. Rep. Mario Biaggi in in return for influence on federal contracts for a Brooklyn ship-repair company; convicted on September 22, 1987 of giving an illegal gratuity; fined $500,000; indicted in 1988 on bribery and tax charges, but the case was dismissed due to his age and poor health. Died, from renal failure caused by a heart attack, while suffering from lung cancer and bladder cancer, in North Shore University Hospital, Manhasset, Nassau County, Long Island, N.Y., September 3, 1993 (age 83 years, 249 days). Burial location unknown.
  Relatives: Son of Felicia Esposito; married to Anne De Cunzo.
  Edwin Meese III (b. 1931) — also known as Ed Meese; "Reagan's Geographer" — Born in Oakland, Alameda County, Calif., December 2, 1931. Lawyer; legal affairs secretary to Gov. Ronald Reagan, 1967-68; executive assistant and chief of staff, 1969-74; law professor; U.S. Attorney General, 1985-88. Lutheran. Member, Federalist Society. The independent counsel who investigated the Wedtech scandal reported that Meese, who had worked as a lobbyist for Wedtech, was complicit in the company's bribery and fraud; following this disclosure, he resigned from the Cabinet. Still living as of 2020.
  Relatives: Son of Edwin Meese, Jr. and Leona Meese; married 1959 to Ursula Herrick.
  See also Wikipedia article — NNDB dossier — Internet Movie Database profile
  Arlan Ingehart Stangeland (1930-2013) — also known as Arlan Stangeland — of Barnesville, Clay County, Minn. Born in Fargo, Cass County, N.Dak., February 8, 1930. Republican. Member of Minnesota state house of representatives, 1966-74 (District 56-B 1966-72, District 9-B 1973-74); U.S. Representative from Minnesota 7th District, 1977-91; defeated (Independent Republican), 1990; news media reported in January 1990 that he had made hundreds of phone calls on his House phone credit card, to or from the home of a female lobbyist; he denied having an extramarital affair, but the scandal contributed to his defeat in November 1990. Lutheran. Member, Delta Sigma Phi. Died in Otter Tail County, Minn., July 2, 2013 (age 83 years, 144 days). Burial location unknown.
  Relatives: Son of Ingehart Stangeland and Pearle (Olson) Stangeland; married, June 24, 1950, to Virginia Grace Trowbridge.
  See also congressional biography — Govtrack.us page — NNDB dossier
  Peter Kott (b. 1949) — also known as Pete Kott — of Eagle River, Anchorage, Alaska. Born in Flint, Genesee County, Mich., August 29, 1949. Republican. Part-owner and operator of Kott's Hardwood Flooring; member of Alaska state house of representatives, 1993-2007 (24th District 1993-2003, 17th District 2003-07); Speaker of the Alaska State House of Representatives, 2003-04; arrested in May 2007, along with Bruce Weyhrauch and Vic Kohring, and charged with bribery and extortion over soliciting and receiving money and favors from VECO Corporation (including the promise of a job as a lobbyist), in return for votes on an oil tax; tried and convicted in September 2007; sentenced to six years in prison and fined $10,000. Still living as of 2009.
  See also Wikipedia article
  John Eric Ensign (b. 1958) — also known as John E. Ensign — of Las Vegas, Clark County, Nev. Born in Roseville, Placer County, Calif., March 25, 1958. Republican. Veterinarian; hotel and casino manager; U.S. Representative from Nevada 1st District, 1995-99; U.S. Senator from Nevada, 2001-; defeated, 1998; delegate to Republican National Convention from Nevada, 2008. Pentecostal. Italian, German, and Filipino ancestry. In June 2009, he admitted to an extramarital affair with Cindy Hampton, a member of his campaign staff and the wife of his Senate aide Doug Hampton. In an unsuccessful attempt to keep the Hamptons quiet about the affair, he gave them $96,000 (an illegally undisclosed severance payment) through his parents. He also used his influence to set up Jeff Hampton as a lobbyist, in violation of laws restricting lobbying by former congressional aides. A grand jury investigation is in progress. Still living as of 2014.
  Relatives: Adoptive son of Michael S. Ensign; son of Sharon Lee Cipriani.
  See also congressional biography — Govtrack.us page — Wikipedia article — NNDB dossier
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