Fiscal Discipline

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From The Politico

Rep. Mike Conaway (R-Texas), a certified public accountant, had pushed for months for an internal audit of the National Republican Congressional Committee, according to GOP members, but the committee’s treasurer at the time was reluctant.

Finally, at a recent meeting, the now former NRCC treasurer, Christopher J. Ward, relented, giving Conaway what was supposed to be an official internal audit from 2006. That document was a fake, the GOP members said. Even the letterhead on which it was sent was a forgery.

Revelations about the falsified document touched off an unfolding scandal that has rocked the NRCC and spurred a criminal investigation by the FBI into the committee’s accounting procedures.

Fearing the fallout from the discovery, the NRCC informed its principle lender, Wachovia, of potential accounting problems. Wachovia, which declined comment Thursday, had lent the committee $9 million in 2006, according to Federal Election Commission records.

Knowing the bank was required by law to notify federal investigators of any “suspicious activity,” the NRCC also alerted the FBI, Republican insiders confirmed.

At the same time, NRCC officials notified the FEC that the committee may have filed inaccurate disclosure statements.

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