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House leader introduces overhaul to ethics rules

[JURIST] Speaker of the US House of Representatives Dennis Hastert (R-IL) [official profile] on Tuesday introduced a proposal which will restrict the gifts Congressmen may receive from lobbyists. The ethics reform plan [Hastert speech] is in response to the recent ethics scandal involving lobbyist Jack Abramoff [JURIST news archive] and Congressman Tom Delay [JURIST news archive]. The legislative package, which was expected [JURIST report] includes the banning of privately sponsored travel, a virtual ban on gifts, including meals, tickets to sporting events, and related travel, and the elimination of pensions of Congressmen convicted of a felony related to official duties. It also increases the length of time former lawmakers and senior aides must wait before they are allowed to lobby Congress from one year to two. AP has more.

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