AllPolitics - News Briefs

Key Whitewater Witness Implicates Lindsey

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AllPolitics, June 28) -- The star witness for the prosecution in the second Whitewater trial testified today under intense cross-examination that White House aide Bruce Lindsey conspired to keep cash withdrawals of $22,500 and $30,000 hidden from the IRS during President Bill Clinton's 1990 Arkansas gubernatorial campaign. Federal law requires that cash transactions of more than $10,000 be reported. Former Perry County Bank president Neal Ainley, who cut a deal with prosecutors in exchange for his testimony, said Lindsey did not want to file IRS reports but also refused Ainley's suggestion to withdraw lesser amounts from multiple accounts in order to side-step the federal law. Lindsey, named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the trial of bank owners Herby Branscum, Jr. and Robert Hill, has denied allegations of wrong-doing. Branscum and Hill are charged with failing to report these transactions and reimbursing Clinton campaign contributors with the bank's money.

Widened Ethics Probe On Newt Stopped


WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, June 28) -- By a partisan 229-170 vote, House Republicans blocked a Democratic resolution calling for further ethics investigations into Speaker Newt Gingrich's (R-Georgia) activities. The resolution would have given independent counsel James Cole the jurisdiction to investigate allegations that Gingrich used at least $6 million in donations from six nonprofit organizations to advance his political views. Tax-exempt foundations are federally prohibited from taking part in partisan activities. Gingrich denied the allegations, saying they were a Democratic attempt to draw attention away from Congressional hearings on the FBI files scandal.

Go To Jail


WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, June 28) -- A federal judge ordered former Rep. Dan Rostenkowski (D-Ill.) to begin serving his 17-month jail sentence July 22 at a federal prison hospital in Minnesota. Rostenkowski, who pleaded guilty to two counts of mail fraud at his congressional office, is recovering from prostate surgery done in May. Once he has recovered, Rostenkowski will serve the remainder of his sentence at the Oxford Federal Correction Institute in Wisconsin, the closest facility to his home in Chicago. Rostenkowski will be required to pay for his incarceration costs. Luckily for him, the former congressman collects an annual $97,000 pension.

Dueling Campaign Reforms

WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, June 28) -- Just when a recent Supreme Court ruling made financing a campaign easier, several House members pulled together to write the most restrictive campaign reform measure yet. Rep. Martin Meehan (D-Massachusetts), Rep. Christopher Shays (R-Connecticut) and Rep. Linda Smith (R-Washington) are drafting a proposal that would ban fund-raising efforts within 50 miles of the Capitol and curb the unlimited donations of "soft" money from special interests. The Supreme Court's ruling allows political parties to spend unlimited amounts on getting their candidates elected, as long as their money is spent independently of the candidate's campaign. Democrats complain that the court's ruling helps the Republican Party, which raised $3.9 million in May for its Senate races while the Democratic Party only brought in $1.6 million.

Senate Rejects House Abortion Ban

WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, June 28) -- The abortion debate has carried over into foreign aid appropriations, with the Senate rejecting House stipulations that barred funding any private group supporting or performing abortions. The Senate Appropriations unanimously approved $410 million for population programs abroad, compared to the $72 million provided in the House bill. Both figures are still down from the $535 million provided last year. Population control programs are a small part of the $12.25 billion foreign aid bill that also includes funding for Russia and other former Soviet states, aid to Egypt and Israel, financing for the World Bank, and money to establish Radio Free Iran.

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