Ten U.S. Senators and three representatives were the Soviet Union’s favorite members of Congress when the Communist nation was our worst enemy, according to a previously classified Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) report obtained by Judicial Watch.
The federal lawmakers had repeated contact with Communist diplomats who “cultivated” relationships with them during the Cold War, the records show. JW obtained the information by using the Mandatory Declassification Review process and the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The records are from an FBI operation that monitored Soviet officials and establishments in Washington, D.C. and determine that there is a “continuing interest by representatives of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) to maintain contacts with and cultivate members or staff personnel of the U.S. Congress.”
Contact between members of Congress, their staff and representatives of the Soviet Union are documented between 1964 and 1972. A compilation of the contacts from January 1, 1967 to July 28, 1970 reveals that Communist diplomats had a total of 180 contacts with U.S. Senators, 94 with members of the House and 832 with their congressional staff. The records show 1967 to be the most active year with 77 Communist interactions with U.S. Senators, 55 with representatives and 265 with staff employees.
Not surprisingly, Ted Kennedy one of the 10 senators that appears on the Communist list. A few years ago JW sued the FBI for once-secret documents that reveal the late Massachusetts senator sought meetings with Communists and others with left-wing views during a tour of several Latin American countries. Kennedy also made arrangements to rent a brothel for an entire night, according to the records which say the veteran lawmaker insisted on interviewing “the angry young men” of each country and meeting with a communist in Bogota that had been mentioned in U.S. investigations of Soviet spy rings.
Besides being tight with Communists, Kennedy was also famous for driving his car into a pond in Chappaquiddick, east of Martha’s Vineyard after a night of partying. The senator escaped the accident unscathed while his mistress, 28-year-old Democratic campaign worker Mary Jo Kopechne, drowned in the car. Kennedy had an expired license and had been drinking at the party yet he only got a slap on the hand, a two-month suspended jail sentence. The tragedy at Chappaquiddick became known as the most brilliant cover-up ever achieved in a nation where investigative procedures are well developed. Two decades after the horrific event more light was shed on the cover-up when the foreman of the grand jury that investigated the accident confessed that the panel was pressured by a judge and a prosecutor not to pursue the case. The foreman said the jury was manipulated and blocked from doing its job.
Here are the others that appear on the FBI list of Communist favorites during the Cold War: South Dakota Senator George McGovern, Minnesota Senator Walter Mondale, Minnesota Senator Eugene McCarthy, Maine Senator Edmund Muskie, Oregon Senator Mark Hatfield, Montana Senator Mike Mansfield, Arkansas Senator J.W. Fullbright, Louisiana Senator Allen Ellender and Massachusetts Senator Edward Brooke. House members include James Fulton of Pennsylvania, Robert Leggett of California and Donald Riegle of Michigan.