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Ethics panel bogs down over senator's case

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — A Minnesota Senate committee is deadlocked over how to handle an ethics complaint against one of their own for how he dealt with reports of an affair between a staff member and the Senate majority leader.

The committee recessed Friday without taking final action in the complaint involving Republican Sen. Geoff Michel. He is accused of deceiving the public and moving too slowly to address infidelity allegations that led then-Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch to resign her leadership post.

The committee is treading carefully given pending lawsuits by Michael Brodkorb, a former staffer vowing to sue after for being fired in the Koch affair.

The panel's two Democrats and two Republicans defeated each other's motions. The GOP wants the complaint dismissed; Democrats are seeking further investigation and a public apology.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

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