House lawmakers and their staffers used to make about 150 stops there a year on their privately sponsored jaunts around the world. Then came a massive ethics investigation, and they all stopped taking those free trips to Turkey -- cold.
Remedial action is necessary if the U.S. Senate has any interest in becoming relevant again to our nation's political discourse. While certainly no cure for what ails the body, a first step toward building back the institution's credibility is to strengthen the Senate's ethics process.
Gannet reported that Wisconsin Republican Tom Petri had successfully gone to bat for a Pentagon contractor in which Petri owned hundreds of thousands of dollars of stock, causing the value of Petri's investment in the company to rise, possibly as much as $200,000.