Cheney's link to corrupt senator Stevens exposed

Published: Saturday August 23, 2008

Vice President Dick Cheney has been linked to Alaska Senator Ted Stevens, who the Justice Department has accused of seven counts of falsely reporting hundreds of thousands of dollars, Newsweek reported.

In a conversation secretly recorded by the FBI on June 25, 2006, Stevens "discussed ways to get a pipeline bill through the Alaska Legislature with Bill Allen, an oil-services executive accused of providing the senator with about $250,000 in undisclosed financial benefits."

Stevens told Allen: "I'm gonna try to see if I can get some bigwigs from back here and say, 'Look … you gotta get this done'."

Only two days later, Cheney took the unusual step of writing a letter to the Alaska legislature which pushed the members to "promptly enact" a bill that would approve the pipeline.

Stevens revealed that he asked the vice president to send such a letter.

The Justice Department's corruption case against Stevens is trying to prove that he used his political influence to help Allen's business in the oil and gas industry in return for large payments for renovations to his home.

But the prosecutors have not mentioned Cheney's letter and the department spokesperson did not respond to Newsweek's requests about it was not included or if Cheney would appear at Stevens' trial.

Stevens is the longest-serving Republican in the Senate and a figure in Alaskan politics before statehood.