News broke last week that federal agents are investigating state Sen. Ron Calderon, searching his office and questioning city officials in Los Angeles County.
But there's no shortage of shady activity that is perfectly legal, says George Skelton in his Monday column.
"Using a broad definition of corruption, there's plenty of it going on legally today," he writes. "There may be little if any bribery or graft, but there are subtler influences of moneyed special interests that corrupt decision-making."
Lawmakers are constantly being showered with gifts and donations while they're make decisions in the Capitol. Calderon himself was well known for enjoying lobbyists' largess -- he used their money for golf games, basketball games and trips to Taiwan and Disneyland.
Calderon's lawyer, celebrity attorney Mark Geragos, said the senator has done nothing wrong. Skelton is skeptical.
"When a high-profile attorney suddenly pops up, I tend to think there's a fire burning," he writes.
All of Skelton's columns are here.