Bush says congressman taking bribes 'outrageous' - Yahoo! News

U.S. President George W. Bush on Tuesday verbally slapped a congressman from his Republican party for taking bribes, calling it "outrageous."

Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham of California resigned on Monday after pleading guilty to taking $2.4 million in bribes in exchange for help in securing Defense Department contracts.

"Any member of Congress, Republican or Democrat, must take their office seriously and the ethics seriously," Bush said to reporters during a trip to Texas.

"The idea of a congressman taking money is outrageous. And Congressman Cunningham is going to realize that he has broken the law and is going to pay a serious price, which he should," Bush said.

Cunningham, 63, an eight-term congressman and decorated Vietnam War pilot, admitted taking cash, antiques, a yacht, vacation expenses and money for his daughter's graduation party from defense contractors between 2000 and 2005. He faces up to 10 years in prison and is to be sentenced on February 27.

It was the latest scandal to hit Republicans, who control Congress.

U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay, a Texas Republican, stepped down as House of Representatives majority leader when he was indicted in September on charges of breaking his state's campaign finance laws.

The Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating stock sales by Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, a Tennessee Republican.

And former vice presidential aide Lewis "Scooter" Libby was charged last month with perjury in an investigation over the leaking of a CIA operative's identity.


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