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Burns says tribal donations not connected to Abramoff

Sen. Conrad Burns (R-Montana) topped the list of lawmakers who received money connected to Jack Abramoff but a spokesperson said the donations have little to do with the disgraced lobbyist.

From 2001 to 2004, Burns received $136,500 from Abramoff, his tribal clients and his partner Michael Scanlon, according to Bloomberg News. Since Burns is chairman of the Senate Interior Appropriations subcommittee, "it should be no surprise that he was heavily lobbied by tribal interests," his spokesperson told The Billings Gazette.

But Montana Democrats say Burns should be investigated for his links to Abramoff. Burns used his position to steer $3 million to the Saginaw Chippewa Tribe of Michigan, one of Abramoff's wealthy clients, under a school construction program meant for poorer tribes. And f Burns' former chief of staff later worked with Abramoff.

Get the Story:
Burns tops donation list of lobbyist (The Billings Gazette 5/24)

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