Congressmen keep funds from guilty donor

Sept. 11, 2008 at 6:16 PM
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WASHINGTON, Sept. 11 (UPI) -- Rep. Jim Moran, D-Va., says he won't give back thousands of dollars he received from a billionaire simply because the donor pleaded guilty in a stock fraud.

Moran said he has no use for politicians who rush to return money they received from donors who have legal troubles, Politico reported.

"They see somebody down, so they want to kick 'em, so they can look good in the eyes of the media," Moran said. "That kind of annoys me. It disgusts me, actually. I don't enjoy kicking people when they're down."

Moran accepted more than $20,000 in campaign contributions from Californians Henry Samueli and his wife, Susan. Samueli is waiting to be sentenced for lying to Securities and Exchange Commission investigators about his role in a $2.2 billion fraud case involving backdating stock options at Broadcom Corp., his Southern California tech firm.

Moran said he was unaware of Samueli's legal problems when he and Rep. Pete Visclosky, D-Ind., earmarked $3 million for the Samuelis' pet project, a non-profit institute in Moran's district that researches alternative treatments such as acupuncture.

Visclosky aide Jacob Ritvo says the Indiana Democrat has "no immediate plan to return" the $30,600 he received from the Samuelis.

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