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October 24, 2014

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Nevada senators vote ‘guilty’ in case of Louisiana judge

It’s shaping up to be a busy day in Congress, but before we get to all of that, a little bit of history in the making.

The U.S. Senate completed its jury duty today, voting this morning to convict Louisiana federal judge Thomas Porteous on charges of corruption and perjury — marking only the eighth time that the Senate has ever forced a judge off the bench.

Porteous was a Clinton appointee in the eastern district of Louisiana in 1994 — but his shady behavior started long before. Porteous was found guilty of accepting bribes, trips, presents and envelopes stuffed full of cash from people involved in cases before him, and lying about his background during his approval process to the federal bench.

The Senate had to, and did, amass a two-thirds majority on carry a guilty verdict on each of four counts of “high crimes and misdemeanors” brought. Nevada Sen. John Ensign voted “guilty” on three of the four counts; Sen. Harry Reid voted “guilty” on only the first count of the four, in which the Senate was unanimous.

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