Advertise:   712.224.5420

Bit player takes center stage in Abramoff scandal

After the Senate Indian Affairs Committee concluded its June 22 hearing into the Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal, the media rushed to talk to the one person who knew the least about it: David Grosh.

Grosh was the former director of the American International Center, a group whose sole purpose appeared to be accepting donations from Abramoff's wealthy clients. He was lured into the position by an old school friend, Michael Scanlon, Abramoff's partner.

"I asked him what I had to do, and he said 'Nothing'. So that sounded pretty good to me," Grosh told the committee.

Grosh said the group did little during its existence. For the first five months, they rented a house and "installed some computers," he testified.

"Did you have any board meetings?" asked Sen. John McCain, the chairman of the committee. "Um, I recall one," Grosh replied. "How long did that last?" said McCain. "Fifteen minutes," said Grosh.

Grosh said he has held a variety of jobs, including lifeguard, construction worker and "preschool mentor." Another person involved in the scandal was Brian Mann, a yoga instructor who refused to testify.

Get the Story:
Lifeguard to exec in a day (The Australian 6/27)
Simplicity Takes a Star Turn in Washington (The New York Times 6/26)

Committee Exhibits:
Part 1 | Part 2

Witness List/Testimony:
Oversight Hearing Before the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs on the In Re Tribal Lobbying Matters, Et Al (June 22, 2005)

Relevant Links:
Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians -

Related Stories:
Choctaws hire lobbyist accused in Abramoff fraud (6/24)
Editorial: Reed lied about taking money from Choctaws (6/24)
Opinion: Reed didn't lie, he just followed the law (6/24)
Ralph Reed pressed by rival to document tribal ties (6/24)
Column: Jack Abramoff's Choctaw Nation (6/24)
Column: No limits to Republican sleaze in Washington (6/24)
Editorial: Washington in worst lobbying scandal ever (6/24)
Senate committee plans to issue lobbying report (6/24)
Under scrutiny, Choctaw tribe goes into hiding (6/24)
Update on Senate hearing into lobbying scandal (6/23)
Mississippi Choctaws at center of lobbying hearing (6/22)
NIGA issues statement on tribal lobbying scandal (6/22)
Coushatta Tribe gave millions to lobbyists, campaigns (6/22)
Influence peddling on the rise in Washington (6/22)
Another hearing on Abramoff lobbying scandal (06/21)
Reed's story on Tiguas doesn't match Abramoff's (06/20)
Opinion sought on GOP group's use of tribal funds (06/16)
Other tribes attended White House meeting with Bush (06/08)
Two tribes paid $50K to attend White House meeting (06/07)
Miss Choctaws say gaming cash not used to lobby (05/31)
Gaming leads to new concerns about lobbyists (05/26)
Ralph Reed changes story on $1.15M tribal donation (05/20)
GOP group funneled tribal money to anti-gamblers (05/13)
Money tribes gave to Abramoff ended up in Israel (4/25)
McCain plans to finish hearings on lobbyist scandal (03/21)
FEC ruling separates tribes from their businesses (03/14)
Tribe gave $75K to group founded by Norton (3/14)
Mississippi Choctaw lawyer referred Abramoff (11/22)
High-priced lobbyist scam linked to lawmakers (11/18)
Choctaw Tribe's lobbying documents kept secret (10/4)
Ex-tribal lobbyists slammed in Senate hearing (9/30)
Busy Indian Affairs Committee hits snag on big issues (06/17)
Indian Affairs Committee activity this week (6/15)
Choctaw chief Martin defends embattled GOP lobbyist (04/09)
McCain pushing Choctaw tribe to cooperate with probe (4/8)
GOP lobbyist scores big with tribes (04/03)