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Friday, August 2, 2013
Ethics reform and new gift disclosure laws will not stop politicians from accepting undisclosed amounts of money and gifts from donors, E.W. Jackson, the Republican candidate for lieutenant governor, said in a radio interview Tuesday.
"I think that we have to hold ourselves to a higher standard, rather than always simply looking for ways to change the law to make people do what they already know is right," Jackson said on HearSay, a talk show on WHRV in Hampton.
Jackson made his remarks in response to the controversy around Gov. Bob McDonnell, who has been under scrutiny for failing to disclose at least $145,000 in loans and other gifts he and his family have received from Jonnie Williams, CEO of Star Scientific.
This week, McDonnell vowed to return all gifts from Williams that remain in his possession. He said that he had paid back loans from Williams with interest.
Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, the Republican nominee for governor, says he has no plans to repay the $18,000 in gifts he received from Williams.
Jackson suggested Tuesday that new laws would not change behavior.
"We can pass all of the laws we want, if people are committed to violating rules of ethics, they are going to do that," Jackson said during the radio interview.
"But if people are committed to living at a higher standard than any rules or laws we can hold them to, we are not going to have any problems," he said.
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