Congressman Ernest Istook to donate lobbyist contributions to Indian health research

Friday, December 23rd 2005, 6:08 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- Campaign contributions that Congressman Ernest Istook or his political action committee received from an American Indian tribes lobbyist will be donated to Indian health research.

Istook is the latest to return or give away campaign donations from lobbyist Jack Abramoff, who represented Indian tribes that donated to congressional campaigns over a five-year period.

The Justice Department is conducting an investigation of possible bribery involving congressional members and their aides. Abramoff hasn't been charged.

Istook says he wasn't involved in any of Abramoff's dealings and has done nothing wrong.

He says the $1,000 Abramoff contributed to his campaign will go to the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation for Indian health research. His political action committee will do the same with its $5,000 donation from Abramoff.

Istook has said contributions he received from Abramoff and the casino interests of his tribal clients weren't related to a letter Istook signed opposing a Louisiana casino that might undercut the tribes' business.