Did HUD Secretary Alphonso Jackson cancel a government contract because of the contractor's anti-Bush views? During an April 28 speech, he told an audience that he did just that. Speaking about the contractor, Alphonso said:
"He had made every effort to get a contract with HUD for 10 years. He made a heck of a proposal and was on the (General Services Administration) list, so we selected him. He came to see me and thank me for selecting him. Then he said something … he said, ‘I have a problem with your president.’
“I said, ‘What do you mean?’ He said, ‘I don’t like President Bush.’ I thought to myself, ‘Brother, you have a disconnect — the president is elected, I was selected. You wouldn’t be getting the contract unless I was sitting here. If you have a problem with the president, don’t tell the secretary.’
“He didn’t get the contract,” Jackson continued. “Why should I reward someone who doesn’t like the president, so they can use funds to try to campaign against the president? Logic says they don’t get the contract. That’s the way I believe."
But today, Jackson apologized for his remarks, saying they were just anecdotal! Huh?
"I deeply regret the anecdotal remarks I made at a recent Texas small business forum and would like to reassure the public that all HUD contracts are awarded solely on a stringent merit-based process."
Ok, for the benefit of Secretary Jackson, who obviously doesn't have an intelligent bone in his body or else he wouldn't make such ignorant statements, let's go to Merriam-Webster's dictionary for the definition of the word "anecdote."
an·ec·dote: a usually short narrative of an interesting, amusing, or biographical incident (http://m-w.com/dictionary/anecdote)
I find it curious that he would use the word "anecdotal" to describe his remarks. There is nothing amusing about canceling a government contract because of the personal views of a company's CEO. In fact, it's illegal under the Federal Acquisition Regulations.
There are reports that HUD Inspector General Kenneth H. Donohue is opening an investigation into the matter.
Of course, Alphonso Jackson has a history of inflammatory and what I consider to be downright outrageous statements.
My favorite one? When he said that in 2004, he was advising the Bush campaign on how to get the Black vote. And he told them to forget about older African-Americans who came up during the civil rights movement, and concentrate their efforts on younger Blacks. He said: "You can't rise as a class. You have to rise individually. It's what many of the civil rights-era people don't understand. They want us to rise together, they keep telling us that we are victims. If they keep telling us they are victims, then there is a role for them to play."
In other words, you're on your own. If you reach a position of prominence, you have no moral obligation to bring bring people up the ladder with you; to help usher them into the room.
One thing for sure, Alphonso never gives you a dull moment. He's what I would politely call bat sh&t crazy.
Jackson apologizes, investigation reportedly planned
Housing Sec. Canceled Contract Because Contractor Criticized Bush, Apparently Violating Law
HUD chief denies spiking Bush critic's contract