Iowa lawmaker resigns after invesigator finds ethics lapse tied to Bachmann campaign


Iowa state Senator Kent Sorenson has resigned, following an ethics investigation that suggests he received pay from at least one presidential campaign in front of the 2012 Iowa caucuses.

The Des Moines Register reports, that Sorenson stepped down hours after an independent investigator found "probable cause" that Sorenson broke ethics rules by accepting payments from a political action committee associated with U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann. The report also indicatesthat Sorenson's denials of taking such money may be a felony under Iowa law.

Sorenson's resignation was announced by the Iowa Senate Republican leader in a statement released around 5 p.m.

Sorenson told the register that he quit fighting the accusations for the sake of his family.

Bachmann's campaign is said to have paid Sorenson $7,500 a month. In an affidavit, former Bachmann chief of staff Andy Parrish revealed how the payments were routed through a company owned by Guy Short. Short also served as the national political director of Bachmann's presidential campaign.

MinnPost reports that Sorenson received the payments from Michele PAC, and Bachmann's campaign through an organization he owned called Grassroots Strategies.

The Star Tribune reports that on two separate occasions Sorenson issued hand written notes to the Iowa Senate Ethics Committee denying the Bachmann Campaign paid him. Bachmann has also denied the allegations that her campaign paid Sorenson.

Politico reports that Sorenson may have also received payments from a senior official on former Rep. Ron Paul's campaign amongst other wire transfers.

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