Stark Hurls F-Bomb At Swalwell Following Caustic Debate Featuring Bribery Charges


April 11, 2012 | At the conclusion of Tuesday’s night contentious candidates forum for the 15th Congressional District, Rep. Pete Stark and Dublin Councilman Eric Swalwell appeared to have shaken hands and exchanged pleasantries, however sources who overheard the conservation say Stark levied a barrage of expletives at his Democratic opponent.

Stark, still seated at the dais at the Hayward City Council chambers, reportedly called Swalwell a “fucking crook” as they shook hands.

When contacted later by phone, Swalwell confirmed the exchange with The Citizen while adding Stark also called him a “slimeball” and told him “you’re going to jail.” Swalwell called the comments “undignified behavior by a member of Congress.” Stark could not be reached for comment at this late hour.

The comments were certainly provoked by a highly caustic hour-long forum where the long-time congressman lobbed a number of bombshells aimed at Swalwell’s record. The specific incident involved a charge made by Stark alleging Swalwell accepted “bribes” from the family of a powerful Dublin developer in exchange for preferential zoning considerations. Swalwell was elected to the Dublin City Council in 2010.

Stark said “hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes” were given to Swalwell by the Lin family in Dublin. “If I were a lawyer, I would call that bribery, but I’m not a lawyer,” said Stark, “so I’ll let Mr. Swalwell define what he thinks taking all this money from people that he gave special zoning privileges to is. Maybe it’s how he sees his role in government.”

Stark said he has never been accused in 40 years of public service of taking money in return for his vote. “Granted, I’ve taking money from all sorts of people who want to support my campaign and physicians,” he added.

“We’ll find out if he can be accused and charged with accepting bribes,” said Stark before being stopped by the moderator, former San Leandro mayor Shelia Young. It was the second time Stark was admonished for lodging personal attacks on his opponents during the forum. Stark’s line of questioning illicited unfavorable reactions from a few conservative audience members.

“As far as I know, I have not accepted any bribes” said Swalwell in response to Stark’s comments. “I don’t know what Congressman Stark is talking about. Maybe the F.B.I. is waiting for me outside,” he joked.

The bribery charge was not the only allegation hurled by Stark at his 31-year-old Democratic challenger. Stark also charged him with not having voted in the past six California elections. Earlier in the forum, Stark resorted to name-calling when he called Swalwell a “pipsqueak” and a “junior leaguer.”

On the voting record allegation, Swalwell said he didn’t know what Stark is talking about, but he looks forward to refuting Stark’s claim. When asked about Swalwell’s response to the voting charge, Stark simply said, “bullshit.”

Independent candidate Chris Pareja, who emerged unscathed from the Stark-Swalwell knife fight, said the representative’s attacks were “vintage Pete” and questioned Swalwell’s showing Tuesday night. “It was the same thing from Eric,” Pareja said later. “It’s just some more ‘Pete’s not showing up for work’ and more rehashing of Pete’s ideas.”

32 thoughts on “Stark Hurls F-Bomb At Swalwell Following Caustic Debate Featuring Bribery Charges

  1. From what you say, I doubt that you've ever attended a Tea Party event! Why would you lie like that unless you were just one of the trolls that promote the liberal agenda, no matter what?

    The problem is is that too many liberals (like Stark, and “Stark Lite” Swalwell) don't read the Constitution and certainly don't believe in it unless they can figure out a way to get over on someone else!

    I think the people around Chris were the people you'd want to live next to and be proud to be their neighbors, and they yours. Who would want to live next to an “Occupy Anyplace” person who would break your windows, set your car on fire, kill your grass, crap in the driveway, then demand you take care of them?! Get your priorities set straight!

    Stark is old and worn out. Stark needs to retire now! He should spend is remaining years with his very young family.

    If you want more unlimited liberal spending, then elect Swalwell. It appears that Chris is the only “adult in the room” who truly has an interest in what goes on in the district and won't be part of the “Big Government Giveaway” that we don't have any money for!

    The liberal wing of the Democratic Party has made spending money and doing “Government Giveways” a “norm” for California. Look where it has gotten us! We're in trouble and we have the liberals to thank for it! There experiment has failed, now let's get back to reality!

    It is about time, and I know there are many Democrats out there that believe the same way, we (all voters) start looking at what our government spends and does with our tax dollars just as we would watch our own family budgets. If you don't have the money, you don't spend it. Plain and simple!


  2. As a resident of Dublin, I must emphatically disagree with the statement that “The people of Dublin want him [Swalwell] out of office.”

    As a peace officer, I know that Swalwell is bright, motivated, and so far as I have ever experienced he has a considerable amount of integrity in doing his work as a Deputy District Attorney.

    Please, before accepting Stark's desperate accusations as gospel, do your research.

    Swalwell has my vote and the votes of numerous public safety officers.


  3. To April 11, 2012 10:41 PM – You're acting like one of the morons you profess voted Stark into office. I have lived in San Leandro all my life and most of the people I know have been voting to get Stark out of office for years so don't put us in the same smelly fish bucket as the people in Hayward and Fremont who have kept him there. I stopped thinking of him as an honorable candidate when the vile coot decided to have an affair with his barely legal aged intern when he was old enough to be her grandfather. We in San Leandro don't take kindly to perverts like that.


  4. I live in Dublin and I would not be surprised if Starks accusations against Swalwell are true. He has consistently voted in favor of the developers and against the wishes of the people of Dublin when it comes to more multi unit housing. I will NOT vote for Swalwell. The people of Dublin want him out of office.


  5. Swalwell voted for the developer and against the wishes of his constituents. I will never vote for him for anything!


  6. I would rather have Steve Tavares in office than Stark or Swalwell; Stark is old & corrupted and Swalwell is capable of being corrupted…Tavares on the other hand is one of those guys that says what needs to be said and would honestly shy away from corruption…but folks like Steve don't run for office.


  7. just goes to show how poor the field of candidates is. Stark could stand around with one finger in his ass and the other flipping off the entire room and he will still get elected because he's still the lesser evil. Ridiculous.


  8. I'm just glad that we have an option to get rid of him this year. Swalwell isn't perfect, but Stark just comes off as so arrogant and dismissive. I've attended his town halls a few times and it always seemed like he was annoyed to be there. Stark just lost my vote.


  9. It's people like who have made this government in Washington what it is today. Stark is 80 years old and you want him to stay in office. What exactly has he done for us.


  10. I was there also and have never witnessed Mr. Stark in public and I cetainly agree with this statement. They even snuck him in the back door prior to the debate.


  11. By MW:

    As a followup in regard to my above comment of about half an hour ago referring to that Pete Stark asserted Eric Swalwell took bribes in exchange for votes concerning favorable zoning decisions for a particular developer, that is obviously impossible, since about five minutes ago I then read an article stating that Swalwell is a lawyer (and which I then quickly checked out and confirmed by using the California State Bar's website), and let me assure you that I am one hundred percent certain there is no way on earth that the totally corrupt CSB, in other words that sleazy operation of two faced phonies, backroom fixers, and pathological liars, and which pretends its primary reason for existence is to protect the public from crooked lawyers, would ever allow any crook to retain his law license.

    In fact in more seriousness, the US Congress, and especially the section of Congress that is made up of members of the Democratic Party, is largely a club, cabal, and cartel of crooked lawyers, and of whom many should be in prison. So why does Pete Stark refuse to blow the whistle on those sleazeballs and parasites he has been serving with for decades.


  12. By MW:

    While I know absolutely nothing about Eric Swalwell, in fact I had not even heard his name until a few weeks ago, however if it is true that he arranged illegal backroom fixes in exchange for bribes, then I think we should vote for him, since it would mean he has already been very thoroughly and extremely well trained in the most important role of high ranking government officials (and extra especially when the government official is a member of the Democratic Party, and such as Pete Stark is), and which is arranging illegal backroom fixes in exchange for bribes.


  13. Swalwell is a fucking tool. No cares enough about pareja. He's just going to steal votes from both candidates and at the same time still not have a chance to win. Stark will win by default, but it's nothing to be proud of. The winner of this election will be like the gold medalist of the special Olympics…. You know how the rest goes.


  14. For his first 20 years in Congress, Stark represented the Tri-Valley, he never won the area, but the fools in Oakland, Alameda, San Leandro, San Lorenzo and Hayward kept sending him back. Then the Tri-Valley was fortunate to be taken away from this nutjob. Hopefully, this year with way more people in the Tri-Valley and no more San Leandro, Oakland, and Alameda idiots to dilute the vote, Stark will be defeated by a razor thin margin. (Hayward will supply a chunk of votes for Stark)


  15. Pete Stark is nothing but a grumpy OLD bully these days! Way to be gracious to your opponent when he goes out of his way to shake your hand!

    I found it highly ironic that Pete decided to use the “you wouldn’t want a surgeon with no experience” line — I wouldn’t want an 80 year old surgeon! Out with the old, in with the new — even if the old will do all they can to keep their grip on power.


  16. Stark just was much better than Pareja or Swalwell. Those tea party people around Pareja are very scary people. I thought soon they were going to start to attack people. I think the Constitution needs to be read by pareja and the tea party people. The Constitution belongs to all not just the tea party. I have attended other tea party events and for this one they were very loud, scary and much of an obstruction to the whole event.

    Go Stark go, and Swalwell will make it past june if he just attacks Pareja on his extreme political views. Swalwell concentrate on june first then november second.


  17. On the tyrant tweet: it's not an opinion, I'm just pointing out the reality that most of the voters in the district tend to side to tight regulations on government and big government.

    I think Pareja did a good job of making the rightwin ideology that scares some liberals around here sound much more palatable.

    I've covered some Tea Party events around here, but I don't believe the use of the word “tyrant” is literal or is it?


  18. what was that all about? what evidence does pete have on Eric that led to comment? stark was loaded for bear last night and it was not necessary. I guess corbett should have been there. Tony Santos


  19. Attended the debate to get to know the candidates. I've never seen Stark before and was surprised how arrogant and negative he was to a new District. He came across as someone who feels he is entitled to be re-elected and seemed irritated that he even has to campaign. The attacks on Swalwell seemed like the kind of stuff you can only get away with if you are a politician. Not sure who I will vote for in this primary, but I know I won't vote for Stark – he completely turned me off, and it seems many in the audience.


  20. It's my thought the tweeter who posted this comment “Lots of “tyrant” talk from Pareja. Not sure how that plays around here when mny want more regulations.” wasn't at the same debate I was,
    or doesn't know what “tyrant” means. ty-rant = 1 a: an absolute ruler unrestained by law or consitition.
    OOPs.. Wasn't it Pareja who gave the constitution to the other two. I'd say believing inthe constitution as written and in the people is not a tyrant. Did this person mistakenly put the wrong name on his/her tweet?


  21. Paragraph #6 “Stark said he has never been accused in 40 years of public service of taking money in return for his vote……..” Oops.. That's not true, in my opinion. Taking money from unions and left wing physicians for “my campaign” in my opinion, means soliciting his vote on issues they are concerned about and would fall into that category. Don't you think?


  22. Thank you to the League of Women Voters for holding the debate. A little clarification on how questions were chosen before debate started would have been good. A three minute response per canidate would have allowed for a few more questions. Otherwise Great.. Thanks


  23. So agree.. Pete Stark is an embarassment! He's definately past his prime and needs to retire.
    Eric came across as the stronger of the two and a better representative BUT the winner in the debate was Chris Pareja. He stayed with the questions and issues giving solutions to problems and a more positive feeling. He believes in the constitution as written, bringing the country back to the people and in being a true representative of the people as show by his reference to electronic meetings.


  24. I was there. Stark is a grumpy guy that should not be representing us any longer. He is out of step and should walk away.
    40 years x 200k = 8Million Stark has took from taxpayers. Its a shame!


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