State Capitol News
8:57 am
Tue April 10, 2012

Patterson Gets Support from Republican Lawmaker

A Republican lawmakers is urging his leadership to give Representative Daniel Patterson a chance to make his case, in person, this morning before the House Ethics Committee. 

The Tucson Democrat-turned-independent has been given until 9:30 to respond in writing to the findings of an outside investigator that he is guilty of threatening and intimidating staffers, lobbyists and fellow legislators. But Representative Cecil Ash , who is a defense attorney, said investigative reports do not always tell the whole story.

"The investigative report had a number of what I would refer to as a number of hearsay statements and anonymous sources and so forth," said Ash. "And you know how reliable those are. They aren't as reliable and sometimes they're not."

Ash said Patterson should be allowed to not only present evidence but also cross-examine witnesses. That is also what Patterson wants. But House Speaker Andy Tobin said he's not interested in a full-blown hearing with Patterson calling his own witnesses to challenge the report given to members of the Ethics Committee last week.

"That's why we went ahead and hired an investigator first, so that they can go through that process for them," said the Speaker. "I know some of the stuff I saw in the report looked like hearsay. And I hope the committee reacts to it that way and throws it out. And then whatever's left makes their decision on that, one way or another."

Whatever the committee recommends -- perhaps as early as today -- still has to be approved by the full House.