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Politics
Choctaws hire three ex-Abramoff lobbyists


The Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians has rehired not one but three former associates of disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff, whom the tribe has accused of fraud.

The tribe hired Kevin A. Ring [Bio], Neil G. Volz [Bio] and Edward P. Ayoob [Bio], according to Senate records [Registration]. All three work for Barnes & Thornburg but previously worked with Abramoff at Greenberg Traurig.

According to the Senate filing, the tribe hired the trio to lobby on "General representation of Native American Tribe, to include lobbying on measures to protect tribal sovereignty and to ensure federal funding for critical tribal programs."

Ring, who refused to testify at the Senate Indian Affairs Committee hearing on Wednesday that focused on the Choctaws, was back on the Hill on Friday to lobby for the tribal labor union rider, The Washington Post reported. Rep. J.D. Hayworth (R-Arizona), the sponsor of the measure, worked with Choctaw Chief Phillip Martin to generate support among members of Congress.

The effort didn't appear to pay off. The House defeated the amendment to the Labor, Education, and Health and Human Services appropriations bill on Friday by a 256 to 146 vote [Roll Call]. The bill itself passed by a 250 to 151 vote.

Get the Story:
Lobbyists, Clients Undeterred by Scandal (The Washington Post 6/26)
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Committee Exhibits:
Part 1 | Part 2

Witness List/Testimony:
Oversight Hearing Before the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs on the In Re Tribal Lobbying Matters, Et Al (June 22, 2005)

Relevant Links:
Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians - http://www.choctaw.org

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