“Well, politics costs money.”

No, not directly related to the MPs’ expenses story.. Newshound noted an interesting report in Roll Call which claims that “Sinn Fein has raked in more than $10 million from U.S.-based donors since it first legally passed the collection plate here nearly 15 years ago.” Over those years that funding could be legally channelled into the party in Northern Ireland, but not into Ireland – as the report also notes, since 1995, “Sinn Fein has held fundraisers regularly in New York, Washington, D.C., and elsewhere, raising money to buy property and office equipment at home while maintaining its beachhead in the United States.”

“We’ve had great help on both sides of the aisle,” Friends of Sinn Fein President Lawrence Downes said of his supporters in Congress. “The core group is terrific. … We rely on them all the time.” Downes declined to provide specifics on Members’ activity with Sinn Fein. Still, he would confirm that Reps. Peter King (R-N.Y.), Richard Neal (D-Mass.) and Joe Crowley (D-N.Y.) remain loyal behind-the-scenes supporters of his group, showing up at fundraisers and meeting with Sinn Fein officials when they are in town. Neal, who met with Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams during President Barack Obama’s inauguration, called the Northern Ireland peace process — in which the United States played a central role — “a very successful dimension to American foreign policy.” [added link]

Of course, Clinton’s actual role is disputed and, here, we still only have an incomplete, or partial, version of the democracy intended.