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GOP candidates
scramble to distance themselves from Foley

GOP candidates
scramble to distance themselves from Foley

Two Republicans in tight reelection contests say they will donate to charities the contributions they received from former congressman Mark Foley, who resigned last week over an an e-mail sex scandal.

Sen. George Allen and Rep. Heather Wilson, two Republicans in tight reelection contests, plan to donate to charities the contributions they received from Mark Foley, the former Florida congressman ensnared in an e-mail sex scandal.

The National Republican Congressional Committee, which has received $550,000 from Foley since 1996, will keep its money, committee spokesman Carl Forti said. ''We will be using the money like every other contribution--to help elect Republicans across the country,'' Forti said.

Virginia's Allen plans to give away the $2,000 his campaign received from Foley last year. Wilson of New Mexico will donate $8,000 she received between 1998 and 2002. ''We're obviously, actively looking to give it to an appropriate charity or entity,'' said Allen campaign adviser Dan Allen.

Since he was elected in 1994, Foley has contributed $30,000 to congressional candidates. His contributions to the National Republican Congressional Committee were his single largest political donations.

Returning money from scandal-plagued politicians has become common practice this election cycle amid a series of guilty pleas, investigations, and confessions of wrongdoing by lobbyists and members of Congress. Among those whose contributions have found their way to charities are former House Republican leader Tom DeLay, disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff, former Republican congressman Randy ''Duke'' Cunningham of California, and Republican congressman Bob Ney of Ohio. (AP)

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