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Aide to Bachmann claims back pay tied to his silence

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A key adviser to Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., is claiming that her political organization is withholding money from former staffers to silence them about the final months of her presidential campaign.

The Star Tribune reports that GOP operative Peter Waldron said that senior Bachmann officials demand that he sign a confidentiality agreement that, he believes, would bar him from discussing campaign-related "unethical, illegal, or immoral activity." Campaign records show that the campaign owes Waldron $916, a sum that he says has been outstanding for a year.

Two former Bachmann aides say the document is a standard campaign release agreement. James Pollack, Bachmann's national finance chairman, said the presidential campaign has paid off more than 90 percent of its debts. He called Waldron's allegations "false, inaccurate and misleading."

Rep. Bachmann and her top advisers face a lawsuit alleging that they improperly used a Christian home-schooling organization's e-mail list. The allegation has prompted a criminal investigation that remains open.

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