July 30, 2007

MOLLOHAN CAST VOTES DESPITE RECUSAL:

Despite having recused himself from matters relating to the FBI — which is reportedly investigating his finances — Rep. Alan Mollohan (D-W.Va.) on Wednesday voted against an amendment that would have increased the bureau’s budget by $6 million.

Republicans say Mollohan’s vote proves his recusal is a sham — and claim the amendment was intended to draw him out. Democrats defended Mollohan, saying he had not participated in discussions about the agencies that are reportedly investigating him, though no one from his office or the Appropriations Committee would go on the record for this article. . . .

It has been widely reported that Mollohan sent a letter to the Appropriations Committee recusing himself from matters involving the Justice Department, a decision that was hailed by watchdog groups such as Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington.

But according to the committee, Mollohan’s recusal applies only to four accounts within Justice: the Office of the Attorney General, the U.S. attorneys, the FBI and the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. Neither Mollohan’s office nor the Appropriations Committee would provide a copy of the recusal letter, and Republicans claimed they have never seen it.

A bit more transparency, please.