Ohio Rep Jean Schmidt Violated Campaign Law

April 30, 2006

From CBS News:

Commission Reprimands Ohio Congresswoman

The Ohio Elections Commission on Thursday reprimanded U.S. Rep. Jean Schmidt for claiming on her Web site last year that she had two college degrees when she had only one.

The commission in a unanimous ruling said Schmidt had violated campaign law.

The Republican went to Congress last year in a special election to replace Rob Portman, whom President Bush appointed U.S. trade representative and is set to take over the White House budget office.

Schmidt obtained a bachelor's degree in political science from the University of Cincinnati in 1974. The Web site said she also had received a bachelor's in education from Cincinnati in 1986.

After a media call to the university revealed she had not, she said she had completed the course work for an education degree but had not received one, said her lawyer, William Todd.

Todd said Schmidt wasn't involved in the creation of her Web site and did not know its contents.

Schmidt campaign spokesman Allen Freeman said the ruling would be appealed.

Schmidt was booed on the House floor in November for her comments criticizing Rep. John Murtha, D-Pa., a decorated Marine Corps veteran who served in Vietnam and is an opponent of the Iraq war.

She said: "Cowards cut and run, Marines never do." Schmidt later sent Murtha a note of apology and said she never intended to attack Murtha personally.