Lawmakers Won’t Face Probe Over Darfur Protest Arrests

Posted May 19, 2009 at 5:29pm

The House ethics committee voted Tuesday against investigating five Democratic lawmakers who were arrested during a protest at the Sudan Embassy in April.“The Committee considered the scope and nature of the conduct of the Members and determined that review by an investigative subcommittee is not required in this matter,— states a one-page report filed Tuesday by the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct.Democratic Reps. Keith Ellison (Minn.), Lynn Woolsey (Calif.), John Lewis (Ga.), Jim McGovern (Mass.) and Donna Edwards (Md.) were arrested April 27 outside the embassy during a protest over genocide in Darfur.According to the committee’s report, each lawmaker paid a $100 fine on the day of their arrest, and “local proceedings related to the arrests of the five Members are now resolved.—Under a House rule approved in 2007, whenever a Member is “indicted or otherwise informally charged with criminal conduct,— the ethics panel is required within 30 days to either impanel an investigative subcommittee or issue a report detailing its decision not to do so.