Since the 1970s, more than a dozen congressmen have been convicted in criminal court. Their cases and sentences include:- Rep. Andrew J. Hinshaw, R-Cal., spent a year in jail after being convicted in 1976 of accepting bribes when he was county tax assessor. He lost the primary election and resigned at the end of his term.
- Rep. Charles Diggs Jr., D-Mich., was convicted in 1978 of operating a payroll kickback scheme in his congressional office. He served seven months of a three-year prison term. He was re-elected, then resigned in 1980.
- Rep. Michael Myers, D-Pa., served 20 1/2 months of a three-year prison sentence for accepting bribes from FBI agents impersonating Arab businessmen. He was convicted in 1980 and expelled from Congress.
- Frank Thompson, D-NJ, sentenced to 3 years in the Arab businessmen bribery scandal (ABSCAM)
- John Jenrette, D-SC, sentenced to 2 years in the Arab businessmen bribery scandal (ABSCAM)
- John Murphy, D-NY, sentenced to 3 years in the Arab businessmen bribery scandal (ABSCAM)
- Raymond Lederer, D-PA, sentenced to 1 year in the Arab businessmen bribery scandal (ABSCAM)
- Rep. Mario Biaggi, D-NY, was convicted in 1988 of extorting nearly $2 million from defense contractor Wedtech Corp. He resigned from Congress and served two years and two months of an eight-year sentence. He was defeated in his 1992 re-election bid.
- Rep. Mel Reynolds, D-Ill., was sentenced in 1995 to five years in prison for having sex with an underage campaign worker. He resigned from Congress, then was sentenced in 1997 to 6 1/2 years for bank fraud and other violations. The second sentence, which was to run at the same time as the first, was commuted in 2001 by President Clinton.
- Rep. Walter Tucker III, D-Calif., was sentenced in 1996 to two years and three months in prison for accepting and demanding bribes while mayor of a Los Angeles suburb. He resigned from Congress a week after his 1995 conviction.
- Rep. Dan Rostenkowski, D-Ill., pleaded guilty in 1996 to two felony mail fraud charges, lost re-election and served 15 months in prison. Clinton pardoned him in 2000.
- Rep. James A. Trafficant, D-Ohio, was convicted of 10 counts of bribery, conspiracy and racketeering, expelled from Congress and sentenced in 2002 to eight years in prison.
- Randy "Duke" Cunningham, R-Cal., sentenced to 8 years and four months for taking more than $2.4 million in bribes in exchange for a long list of political favors
Hmmm. Maybe the Republican crimes were of a more serious nature?
Total Years Sentenced (all years sentenced including years commuted and pardons granted by President Clinton, D-Ark.)
Republicans: 11 yrs, 4 months
Democrats: 54 years, 2 months