Legal Filings

Legal Filings
Apr 18, 2005

CREW Files Texas Public Information Request Regarding US Sen Cornyn’s Involvement With Indian Gaming

Washington, D.C. – Earlier today, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) filed Texas Public Information Act requests with both the Texas Office of the Attorney General and with the Texas Governor’s Office.  CREW has asked the Attorney General’s Office for information regarding contacts between former Attorney General (now U.S. Senator) John Cornyn and Jack Abramoff, Michael Scanlon and Ralph Reed as well as for all documents related to the Tigua Tribe of El Paso, Texas.  CREW also asked the Governor’s Office for information documents generated and received regarding the Tigua Tribe.

CREW filed its requests in response to a statement by Sen. John Cornyn that, while working to close down the Tigua’s Speaking Rock Casino, he never met with Ralph Reed, who had been paid by the Coushatta Tribe of Louisiana to close down the Tigua’s casino. E-mail correspondence between Jack Abramoff and Ralph Reed, however, suggest otherwise.

For example, on November 12, 2001, Reed sent Abramoff an e-mail stating, “get me details so I can alert cornyn and let him know what we are doing to help him” (sic).  Similarly, on November 13, 2001, Reed wrote “I strongly suggest we start doing patch-throughs to perry and cornyn (sic).  We’re getting killed on the phone.”  Also, on January 7, 2002, Reed sent an e-mail to Abramoff stating “I think we should budget for an ataboy for cornyn” (sic).

Melanie Sloan, CREW’s executive director, stated “e-mail correspondence between Jack Abramoff and Ralph Reed shows that Senator Cornyn was clearly more involved with Ralph Reed than he is willing to admit.  Thanks to Texas’ open records act, we will soon have proof that in his efforts to distance himself from Jack Abramoff and the unfolding scandal involving the Tigua, Senator Cornyn is lying.  It will also be interesting to discover what role, if any, Governor Perry played in closing the casino.”

The Texas Public Information Act allows citizens for request information from the Texas government.  Both the Attorney General’s Office and the Governor’s Office have ten days to respond to CREW’s request

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