Andrew Wise Quoted Regarding Former VA Senator Resignation Investigation in The Washington Post

"Legal experts say it would be difficult to prove public corruption against Puckett or Kilgore"
The Washington Post
06.19.14

Andrew Wise was quoted regarding the corruption investigation following Phillip P. Puckett's resignation from the Virginia Senate. Democrats accused Republicans of bribing the former Senator to leave in exchange for job prospects for Puckett and his daughter. Many argue that while Puckett's behavior may be considered unseemly, it is not criminal, in light of the 2010 Supreme Court decision ruling that prosecutors prove "official acts" were made in exchange for bribes or kickbacks. The question remains whether resigning an office constitutes an official act. "It's a stretch, because I think it's more of an abdication than an act," Wise said. "I would hate to be the line prosecutor trying to sell this to my supervisor." Wise added that such a prosecution is not impossible. For example, if a state legislator took $5,000 to abstain from voting on a matter when his or her vote would have broken the tie, would that constitute honest services fraud, and is that so different from Puckett's conduct, Wise asked. "You could cobble together an argument."

Wise's comments were republished in a follow-up article titled "Va. officials skeptical of U.S. interest in Phillip Puckett’s resignation from state Senate" in a later version of the same publication on June 19, 2014.

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