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Illinois Dem Under Investigation for Bribing

After Marie Newman, a Democratic congresswoman from Illinois, admitted to court that she had promised a six-figure job for a potential rival political candidate, the House Ethics Committee is now investigating.

The investigation was announced by the committee in a Thursday afternoon press statement. This comes approximately six months after Newman settled an breach of contract lawsuit against Iymen Chehade, a local Palestinian activist. Newman’s attorneys, who were funded by taxpayers, admitted to a federal judge that Chehade had signed an employment contract that guaranteed her a top position in her office if she wins election to Congress, legal documents show. Chehade’s lawyers argued that Newman extended his offer to Chehade as a bribe in order to keep him out of the 2020 primary race.

His attorneys stated that Chehade relied on the promise and abstained from running for office. He then lost the chance to serve as a congressional representative in her office. Newman promised Chehade a top-ranking position in the Democrat office. He did not have to work “specific hours” and he was paid a $140,000 salary. He also gave him complete discretion over the hiring and firing of staff members.

Newman’s office acknowledged that the investigation was underway in a statement, It also noted that the inquiry stemmed from a “dismissed lawsuit.” The lawsuit was dropped “by agreement” after Newman’s settlement of the matter with Chehade.

In July.Kendra Arnold, executive director of Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust, spoke at that time to the Washington Free Beacon That congressional investigators could use facts in the civil case against Newman.

“Civil liability and government ethics and criminal liability are two completely separate things. The civil court case is between her and the individual,” stated by Arnold who filed a complaint  against Newman in May with the Office of Congressional Ethics. “Whether they resolve their personal differences has nothing to do with the ethics case and her issues with the federal government. The facts in the civil case show the ethics concerns are significant.”

Newman’s office stated that it was happy to assist throughout the investigation.

“We look forward to resolving this matter,” Newman’s spokesperson told CQ Roll Call.

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