The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

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April 14, 2014

Branstad: Partisan politics behind investigations

DES MOINES — Gov. Terry Branstad says Democrats pursuing investigations into confidential settlement agreements, do-not-hire lists, and other issues are practicing partisan politics at its worst.

At his Monday news conference, Branstad argued lawmakers ought to focus on the budget and policy issues instead of making accusations using politically charged words.

Two hours later House Democrats called for an expanded investigation into allegations some employees have been blacklisted from future state employment and other issues.

They proposed a resolution authorizing the House Oversight Committee to hire an independent legal counsel that could make recommendations for legislative action or prosecution if crimes are suspected.

The Senate Government Oversight Committee also is holding another hearing to ask questions about government payments to former workers for secrecy and problems they believe exist in the executive branch.

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