Virginia's McDonnell Returning the Rolex
Bob McDonnell says all controversial gifts from donor will be returned
By John Johnson, Newser Staff
Posted Jul 30, 2013 1:38 PM CDT
Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell dances with his wife, Maureen, during his inaugural ball in Richmond in 2010.   (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

(Newser) – Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell still says he did nothing wrong in accepting gifts and loans from a state businessman, but everything is going back anyway. McDonnell said during a radio interview today that he will return all the gifts that Jonnie Williams gave him, including a $6,500 Rolex, reports CNN. (He already announced last week that he'd be repaying $120,000 in personal loans from Williams.) The return policy apparently applies to everything that Williams gave to members of McDonnell's family, including a $15,000 Bergdorf Goodman shopping spree for wife Maureen, a $10,000 engagement gift to one of his daughters, and $15,000 in wedding catering to another daughter, reports AP.

"It is my intent now to work with my counsel to ensure that all remaining gifts that we have are also returned," said the governor. For the record, the Washington Post isn't sure he meant that all his family's gifts would go back as well. It also points out that McDonnell, for the first time, said he wasn't aware of the extent of Williams' largesse to his family: “Some of them [the gifts] I did not know about at the time." And the AP highlights this quote from McDonnell in his own defense: "Many questions have been asked about why I didn't do X, Y, and Z. Well, because it's not the law. For instance, any gifts that are given to family members or spouses aren't reportable under current law." He's doing so now to restore trust with Virginians, he said. Over at Slate, Dahlia Lithwick points out that the most common modifier of "Virginia ethics laws" is "lax."

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Showing 3 of 32 comments
clmsman
Aug 1, 2013 1:54 PM CDT
What is wrong with these people is a watch worth ruining your reputation? I am so disappointed in this guy he has proven that he is as small a person as I generally view all politicians. I worked in the public sector I never took anything when it was offered. My wife also works in that sector she was offered some tickets one time and was struggling whether or not to accept them. I gave her a simple rule and said could you go into work tomorrow and tell everyone there that you had accepted these tickets for this event she said no, I said you know your answer now. If you can't reveal something its probably wrong.
Observer
Jul 31, 2013 9:52 AM CDT
This insincere, two-faced cockbite needs to tried for bribery and income tax evasion. And be impeached. He clearly was taking bribes. I mean gifts. What a shitbag to think he can stay in office after being found out. Can you say prosecute, convict and jail time? How much money did he take from others as yet unnamed?
Caps
Jul 31, 2013 9:30 AM CDT
Oh my, what a CORRUPT GOVERNOR the beautiful state of Virginia. With a governor like him it could become a back mark on this state. He should resign and get out of politics.