Stevens faces expulsion votes this week

Nov. 16, 2008 at 4:40 PM
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WASHINGTON, Nov. 16 (UPI) -- The U.S. Senate will decide this week whether Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens should be ousted from his seat because of his recent federal corruption conviction.

Stevens, the longest-serving Senate Republican, also faces a vote Tuesday by his GOP colleagues as to whether he should be removed from their caucus, which would mean Stevens would lose his committee assignments and his vote on party matters, McClatchy Newspapers reported Sunday.

Stevens is in danger of losing his seat to Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich, who challenged him in the Nov. 4 election. Votes in the close race are still being tallied.

"The latest report I saw is that Begich is pulling ahead," making expulsion votes a moot point, said Sen. Mike Crapo, R-Idaho.

"Look, we have due process rights. Until a person has been exhausted all of them, we should reserve judgment till he's had full due process. We need to wait to see the outcome of the election, as well as due process."

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