Former House Majority Leader Sells His Soul for Fistful of Dollars


Washington has long-suffered from unethical politicians, but the prize for the top hypocrite on an Armenian issue goes to former Cong. Richard Gephardt who served as House Majority Leader from 1989 to 1995 and Minority Leader from 1995 to 2003.

After championing the recognition of the Armenian Genocide for over two decades, Gephardt retired from the House of Representatives in 2005, and began enriching himself by lobbying against the very issue that he had staunchly defended in Congress!

Taking advantage of Turkish paranoia on the eve of the Centennial of the Armenian Genocide, the Gephardt Group Government Affairs expanded earlier this year its long-standing lobbying relationship with the Republic of Turkey. The new contract, worth $1.4 million per year, includes subcontractors Dickstein Shapiro ($531,000 per year), Greenberg Traurig ($314,000 per year), Lydia Borland ($180,000 per year), and Brian Forni ($78,000 per year). The Gephardt Group and its subcontractors agreed to provide the following services to Turkey:

“(a) Proposing and pursuing passage of legislation and other U.S. government action that promotes Turkey’s interests and provides a positive image of Turks, Turkey and the United States-Turkey relationship,
(b) Preserving and enlarging the Congressional Caucus on Turkey and Turkish Americans,
(c) Educating members of Congress and the Administration on issues of importance to Turkey,
(d) Promptly notifying Turkey of any action in Congress or the Executive Branch on issues of importance to Turkey,
(e) Preparing brief analyses of developments in Congress and the Executive Branch on particular issues of concern to Turkey,
(f) Identifying official gatherings and social events to which [Turkish] Embassy personnel ought, in the Gephardt Group’s opinion, attend, including to the extent possible, obtaining the necessary invitations,
(g) Identifying and/or arranging speaking engagements locally and nationally for [Turkish] Embassy personnel or their appointed or suggested proxies in fora that will improve Turkey’s image and advance its causes on Capitol Hill. Such would be, if so directed by Turkey, coordinated with Turkey’s existing public relations service provider(s), and
(h) Maintaining and forging alliances with other interest groups whose goals are similar to or shared by Turkey.”

Significantly, subcontractor Greenberg Traurig’s responsibilities include: “develop and utilize contacts at the State and Defense Departments, and the National Security Council to convey the seriousness of the genocide issue and the potential threat it poses to the U.S./Turkey relationship.”

While there are plenty of sleazy lobbyists in Washington, none can match Gephardt’s shocking transformation from a leading supporter of Armenian Genocide recognition to a genocide denialist! The early years of Gephardt’s shameful flip-flop on this critical moral issue was revealed by The New Republic in its July 23, 2007 article titled, “K Street Cashes in on the 1915 Armenian Genocide.” Throughout his 26 years in Congress, Cong. Gephardt co-sponsored several genocide Resolutions and repeatedly spoke on the importance of recognizing the Armenian Genocide. In 2000, Gephardt and two other House Democrats co-signed a letter to then-Speaker Dennis Hastert urging him to schedule an immediate vote on the Armenian Genocide Resolution.

In January 2005, barely days after leaving his House seat, Gephardt opened his consulting and lobbying firm in Washington, D.C. From 2005 to 2009, he became a strategic adviser on government affairs for the international law firm of DLA Piper, which was paid $100,000 per month to represent the interests of Turkey, including lobbying against the pending House Resolution on the Armenian Genocide! The New Republic reported that Gephardt arranged meetings between members of the Turkish parliament and House Democratic leaders, helped Turkey’s U.S. Ambassador to gain an audience with “a skeptical Nancy Pelosi,” and circulated a booklet titled “An Appeal to Reason,” that denied the Armenian Genocide.

Armenian-Americans and all people of good will should not remain silent while Gephardt enriches himself with Turkish blood money! They should warn his lobbying firm’s clients — Anheuser-Busch, Boeing, Chevron, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, General Electric, Goldman Sachs, Google, Los Angeles Airport, National Football League, Port of Oakland, and United Airlines — that they will boycott their products and services unless these firms cancelled their contracts with the Gephardt Group. Letters of complaint should also be sent to Ford Motor Company and The Scripps Research Institute for giving Gephardt a seat on their Board of Directors.

Finally, readers should write directly to Dick Gephardt, Gephardt Government Affairs, 1101 K Street, N.W., Suite 310, Washington, D.C. 2005 or send an e-mail to, admonishing him for his highly unethical behavior!

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  1. Hratch said:

    Not much different from any other politician in the world. Even worst, politicians in Armenia have long sold-out their country for monetary gain. It’s more the rule than the exception in a capitalist world. Everyone is looking out for number one, and with the political animal, that number one is himself and his family.

  2. Zareh said:

    Thank you for bringing this hypocrite into the attention of the Ar,enhanced community.
    I strongly suggest ANCA to have web letters available regarding the companies that his firm works for and through direct letters to these companies interested Armenians can send the email letters.
    Very few Armenians will do the homework necessary to find the emails of these companies and let alone write the appropriate letters of concern.
    Thanks again for a swell job you are doing.

  3. Satenik said:

    Name and shame them and hit them where it hurts hardest;money. Yes you can boycott their products and services and make sure they know the reason why.



  5. Krikor Sarkissian said:

    Another Judas Iscariot. Or is it the world’s oldest profession ??

  6. hye said:

    great article Mr. Sasounian, but I think it needs to be published/printed in Washington Times or major paper that way everyone in nation would know the truth about this politician.

  7. light said:

    evil people like him are ready to sell their souls to devil

    what a sick planet we are living in
    and how ironic it is these people are parents and have kids to teach what ?
    you want to make money go to bed with devil that’s where the money and power is

    peice of nasty creation

    • Hratch said:

      It’s not the planet, it’s the humans who reside on it. I don’t think the planet or the universe would even notice if the human race suddenly disappeared.

  8. light said:

    all his clients are part of the new world order and illuminati
    the planet has taken over by devils and devil worshipers
    money money more money !
    and the rest can roast in HELL!

  9. Danoog said:

    No more Budweiser, Chevron, United Airlines or Enterprise for me. But are we surprised? American politicians are filthy, greedy, unscrupulous scumbags.

    • Hratch said:

      As opposed to the most gracious, benevolent, generous, bountiful, considerate and compassionate politicians in other parts of the world !