Ethics Complaint against Sen. Newman Dismissed

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Senator Scott Newman

Senator Scott Newman called it a “learning moment”. The Senate Ethics Committee called it a dismissal. DFL Senators who brought the ethics complaint against Senator Newman called the dismissal something that still leaves a lot of unanswered questions… including who instructed Newman’s legislative aide to send out an email saying he would not meet with a constituent because they had donated to his opponent.

After a lengthy public hearing and then closed door executive session, the Senate Ethics Committee dismisses the ethics complaint against Senator Scott Newman:

Senator Scott Newman talks about the dismissal:

The UpTake’s Jacob Wheeler reads the Ethic Committee’s resolution:

Senator Ken Kelash who was one of the DFL Senators who brought the ethics complaint released the following statement.

“When we brought this complaint before the Senate’s Ethics Subcommittee, we had one simple goal: to determine the origins of the “pay-to-play” policy detailed in the e-mail sent by Sen. Newman’s staff.

The Ethics Subcommittee determined there was not enough evidence to find probable cause that Sen. Newman ordered his staff person to write this e-mail. They did agree with our complaint that the e-mail sent from Sen. Newman’s office raised severe ethical concerns, and risked breaching the public’s trust in the Legislature.

Unfortunately, we are still left with many questions. Most importantly, we still don’t know if someone influenced Sen. Newman’s staff to write this e-mail. We are disappointed we didn’t have an opportunity to hear from Sen. Newman’s staff person about what direction she was given before typing this correspondence. Sen. Newman made it clear to the subcommittee that he had at least some idea what direction she was given, but refused to share those details with subcommittee members.

We are grateful for the time the subcommittee allowed to review this incident. We simply wish we had more complete answers for the troubling questions raised by the e-mail.”

Michael McIntee

Michael McIntee is a former network TV news executive with more than 30 years of broadcasting experience. He began his broadcasting career at the University of Minnesota's student radio station. He is an expert producer, writer, video editor who has a fondness for new technology but denies that he is a geek. More about Michael McIntee »

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