Hood Responds to Receiving PAC Funds - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Jackson 02/15/08

Hood Responds to Receiving PAC Funds

by Marsha Thompson
marsha@wlbt.net

In our 3 on Your Side investigation, we revealed $400,000 donated by indicted trial lawyers Dickie Scruggs and Joey Langston last September to the Democratic Attorneys General Association — a PAC. That political action group sent $550,000 to help Jim Hood win re-election in 2007.

Hood says our report was unfair. "Had I known they were going to have these legal problems, I certainly would not have accepted anything directly, any direct contribution. We never told them to give any money there, and secondly, the Democratic Attorneys General are my colleagues." 

Hood has worked closely with Scruggs in the Katrina lawsuit and hired Langston as outside counsel, in the MCI lawsuit. Both lawyers made millions. Both face federal charges of judicial bribery.

So we ask if Hood should return their generous contributions. "Would you look at that $400,000 those two indicted attorneys gave and say 'I'm going to give that back?'"

Hood responded, "That's up to DAGA." To call on me as a democrat and disarm and not accept money from PACs is unfair. It's unfair to run it on one particular person when you don't go look at others." 

When asked if his office should have pursued criminals charges against those caught up in the judicial bribery scandal Hood responded, "If I went after one or more of those individuals it would create an appearance of impropriety. That I do not do."

Hood says he has offered the full assistance of his office in the federal investigation.

Back on point, Hood insists big corporations are laundering money through political action groups and those contributions must be capped so no one can buy a political office. "There's a danger in our politics, when people, corporations are able to buy offices that belong to the people."

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