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Op-Ed Writer Resigns From Copley News (taking bribes)
Payola Pundit Doug Bandow Resigns From Copley News Service
By Dave Astor
December 20, 2005

NEW YORK Columnist Doug Bandow resigned Tuesday from Copley News Service, E&P has learned. He had been under fire for accepting payola from indicted Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff to write Op-Ed pieces favorable to some of Abramoff's clients.

Copley had suspended the columnist last Friday. "We accepted Doug Bandow's resignation today," Glenda Winders, the syndicate's vice president and editor, told E&P Tuesday via e-mail. "He had been with us since 1983, and he had a wide following in our own Copley papers and beyond."

Winders, who was responding to an E&P query seeking an update on Bandow's situation, did not say how many papers Bandow was in. At least one client -- the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review -- had already announced Tuesday that it was dropping Bandow's column.

Winders declined further comment.

Bandow had previously resigned from the Cato Institute last Thursday after admitting he took bribes -- a transgression first revealed by BusinessWeek.com. Bandow said he accepted money to write 12-24 pieces starting in the mid-1990s. He received $2,000 for some of the commentaries.

The now-former Copley columnist is one of several conservative commentators who, in a series of 2005 revelations, were found to have accepted money to promote programs and initiatives without disclosing the funding. They include Armstrong Williams of Tribune Media Services (which dropped Williams), Maggie Gallagher of Universal Press Syndicate, and the self-syndicated Michael McManus.
Dave Astor (dastor@editorandpublisher.com) is a senior editor at E&P.