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Politician Lobbying Efforts Go Unrewarded. 2005-11-06
Rep. Robert W. Ney has just been subpoenaed by a federal grand jury. Ney notified Congress about his participation in the case. The case is examining the lobbying activities of Jack Abramoff.
The subpoena was delivered to him several days ago. The idea of bringing him in to the mix is in hopes to bring out records and other testimony from his office. His spokesman, Brian Walsh, stated it is the first contact Ney has received from federal investigators. Ney has denied any wrongdoing, or protecting any wrongdoings.
Under House rules, members must announce subpoenas. These announcements are then reported in the Congressional Record. Ney believes he and his office are wrongfully asked to comment on an ongoing case.
Ney’s part in this is that he has received campaign contributions from Abramoff and has accepted favors. Some of these things included; dinners at the lobbyist's restaurant, a fundraiser at the lobbyist's MCI Center box, and a golfing trip to Scotland in August 2002. All of this was found in public records, e-mails, interviews and documents later obtained by The Washington Post.
Ney, in return, promised to add language to a bill to reopen a casino for a Texas Indian tribe. It was the same tribe that Abramoff represented. Afterwards, Ney agreed to prepare the legislation. Abramoff then directed tribal officials to make three contributions totaling $32,000 to Ney's campaign. A Ney spokesman recently said that money has been donated to Ohio charities, but none the less didn’t deny where it came from.
In 2000, Ney was favorable to Abramoff's purchase of a Florida gambling company, SunCruz Casinos, as seen in testimony of congressional record. Abramoff and business partner Adam Kidan were indicted in August on fraud charges related to this purchase. Ney being called in is justified. Federal prosecutors in Florida are investigating Ney's opinion as well as role in the SunCruz deal.
(By Andrea)