Three Democrats off hook in ethics probe

Dec. 20, 2009 at 6:58 AM
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WASHINGTON, Dec. 20 (UPI) -- The Office of Congressional Ethics has recommended dropping the investigation of three U.S. House Democrats, the lawmakers' aides report.

Reps. John Murtha of Pennsylvania, Norm Dicks of Washington and Jim Moran of West Virginia were being investigated to determine whether their relationship with a lobbying firm, PMA Group, violated House rules or federal laws on gifts to officials, Roll Call reported. Aides said Friday the three had been notified the committee rejected a formal investigation.

A document leaked in October and posted on said Murtha, Dicks, Moran and four other members of the House were being investigated for campaign contributions from PMA clients. The others were Reps. Peter Visclosky, D-Ind., Marcy Kaptur, D-Ohio, Todd Tiahrt, R-Kan., and Bill Young, R-Fla.

"I appreciate the panel's thorough investigation and carefully considered and unanimous decision to dismiss what were from the outset baseless charges. If the vindication and dismissal of the matter gets one-tenth of the visibility that the allegation assumed, I'll be pleased," Moran said in a statement.

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