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Arcuri and Hanna spar over campaign contributions

By GARY LIBERATORE

(WKTV) - The race for the 24th Congressional District seat in congress is heating up, and it's only August.

Richard Hanna's camp blasted Michael Arcuri for certain campaign contributions, but in the end, Arcuri never received the contributions in the first place. The whole issue involves alleged campaign contributions by a man named Paul Magliochetti who was just indicted last week by a grand jury for illegal campaign contributions.

Magliochetti was the founder of a now defunct Washington D.C. based lobbying group called PMA. In a press release by Richard Hanna's office, Hanna demanded Arcuri return $17,500 donated by Magliochetti. The problem is, there is no record with the Federal Election Commission that Magliochetti ever donated any money to Arcuri.

Hanna Spokesperson, Renee Gamela says the numbers were obtained from a blog on the website "opensecrets.org". Some of Magliochetti's former clients such as Lockheed Martin and Boeing did contribute to Arcuri, but not Magliochetti himself.

Arcuri's office came back with a press release of their own, stating that Hanna lies to the public and to the media, and has now "stooped to a new low."

NEWSChannel 2 caught up with Congressman Arcuri Friday morning. He confirms he never received any money from Paul Magliochetti, he says "the individual, his PAC, his political action committee, which is PMA, their employees, their spouses, no one. We didn't take any of the money." "This is what people dislike the most about campaigns. It's not bad enough when people sling mud, what's even worse is when it's out and out lies."

Hanna Spokesperson Renee Gamela, told us, Richard Hanna was not available for an interview on this issue Friday, but she did release a statement. The statement said..."If anyone is trying to fool the public, it's Mike Arcuri, who plays the Washington game of taking money from wherever he can and whomever he can, regardless of ethical issues. It's clear that this is part of Paul Magliocchetti's web of political corruption where he used anyone - including his clients - to increase his lobbying firm's influence and profitability."

Gamela also noted that Arcuri has accepted contributions from other people who have had their problems, including Congressman Charlie Rangel and former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer.

On that, Arcuri noted, he returned those contributions, after learning of their much talked about public issues. Congressman Arcuri added he hopes to focus on the issues important to the people over the next two and a half months, such as the economy and job creation, rather than reacting to mudslinging.

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