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White House Stands Firm With ‘Abramoff Four’

As the scandal swirling around Jack Abramoff begins to mount, the White House made it clear this morning it was standing behind the four Republican members of Congress most closely linked with the disgraced Washington “superlobbyist.”
 
At the Monday briefing for reporters at the White House, I reminded Press Secretary Scott McClellan how, when President Bush campaigned for moderate Sen. Arlen Specter (R.-Pa.) against a strong primary opponent last year, he (McClellan) explained that the President always supports Republican incumbents in Congress who support his policies. 
 
Asked if that policy still stands and whether the President supports the so-called “Abramoff Four” — Republican Reps. Tom DeLay (Tex.), John Doolittle (Calif.), and Bob Ney (Ohio) and Sen. Conrad Burns (Mont.) — McClellan replied that he would “check on each” for me but he “thinks it’s yes to all four of them.” 
 
In negotiating a plea bargain with Abramoff, federal prosecutors have confirmed that alleged bribery of House Administration Committee Chairman Ney is one of their principle goals in probing what could mushroom into the biggest Capitol Hill scandal since the congressional check-kiting affair of 1992. 
 
DeLay’s ties with Abramoff and the lobbyist’s employment of Doolittle’s wife in one of his enterprise have also been repeatedly highlighted in news reports.  Burns, so far the only senator to be tied to Abramoff, has returned six-figure donations generated from Indian interests represented by the former embattled lobbyist, has  been dropping recently in statewide polls to the point where he is in a virtual stand-off with State Auditor John Morrison, his likely Democratic opponent in ’06.

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John Gizzi has come to be known as â??the man who knows everyone in Washingtonâ? and, indeed, many of those who hold elected positions and in party leadership roles throughout the United States. With his daily access to the White House as a correspondent, Mr. Gizzi offers readers the inside scoop on whatâ??s going on in the nationâ??s capital. He is the author of a number of popular Human Events features, such as â??Gizzi on Politicsâ? and spotlights of key political races around the country. Gizzi also is the host of â??Gizziâ??s America,â? video interviews that appear on HumanEvents.com. Gizzi got his start at Human Events in 1979 after graduating from Fairfield University in Connecticut and then working for the Travis County (Tex.) Tax Assessor. He has appeared on hundreds of radio and TV shows, including Fox News Channel, C-SPAN, America's Voice,The Jim Bohannon Show, Fox 5, WUSA 9, America's Radio News Network and is also a frequent contributor to the BBC -- and has appeared on France24 TV and German Radio. He is a past president of the Georgetown Kiwanis Club, past member of the St. Matthew's Cathedral's Parish Council, and secretary of the West End Friends of the Library. He is a recipient of the William A. Rusher Award for Journalistic Excellence and was named Journalist of the Year by the Conservative Political Action Conference in 2002. John Gizzi is also a credentialed correspondent at the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. He has questioned two IMF managing directors, Dominique Strauss-Kahn and Christine LaGarde, and has become friends with international correspondents worldwide. Johnâ??s email is JGizzi@EaglePub.Com

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