Okla. governor avoids ouster move

NEWSWATCH... ON THE NATION

February 10, 1994

Oklahoma Gov. David Walters, who pleaded guilty last year to violating campaign finance laws, narrowly avoided an impeachment inquiry when the Oklahoma House voted against the move.

"We're glad to have it behind us," Mr. Walters said after yesterday's 52-47 vote. "We don't hold anything against anybody."

Mr. Walters, who is completing his first four-year term, has said he will not seek re-election.

Mr. Walters pleaded guilty in October to accepting $18,500 from a contributor during his 1990 campaign. The legal limit for donations is $5,000.

Prosecutors had eight felony counts against Mr. Walters dismissed in return for his pleading guilty to the misdemeanor. He received a one-year deferred sentence, paid a $1,000 fine and agreed to turn over to the state Ethics Commission the money he had raised already for a 1994 race.

Packwood loses

A federal judge in Washington has denied Sen. Bob Packwood's request to keep his diaries from the Senate Ethics Committee pending an appeal of the panel's subpoena.

Yesterday's ruling means Mr. Packwood, R-Ore., now must rely on the U.S. Court of Appeals to keep the diaries out of the committee's hands while the constitutional challenge is decided.

U.S. District Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson issued a one-sentence decision on Mr. Packwood's request: "Ordered, that the motion is denied."

Judge Jackson on Monday established a 15-day timetable for transfer of the diaries to the committee for its investigation of sexual misconduct, witness intimidation and obstruction of the inquiry.

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