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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Eye On Boise

Two views of ethics panel outcome…

Here's a link to my full story at on the House Ethics Committee hearing today, at which a 4-3 party-line vote cleared Rep. Phil Hart of conflict-of-interest charges. Hart still faces an additional ethics charge of abuse of legislative privilege; the committee will convene another time to consider that charge. Rep. Tom Loertscher, R-Iona, the ethics committee chairman, said, "My emphasis has been dealing with this fairly, looking at it totally objectively, trying to divorce the personalities from the issues. When it comes down to that ... I think we probably did a pretty good job today."

Rep. Wendy Jaquet, D-Ketchum, the panel's vice-chair, said, "I'm disappointed. I think to me, the perception is out there and the constituents are upset, and his actions do stain the credibility of the institution. And that's what I'm really concerned about."

Betsy Z. Russell
Betsy Z. Russell joined The Spokesman-Review in 1991. She currently is a reporter in the Boise Bureau covering Idaho state government and politics, and other news from Idaho's state capital.

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