After McDonnell scandal, wining and dining of Va. pols down

Bob and Maureen McDonnell (Associated Press photo)

Bob and Maureen McDonnell
(Associated Press photo)

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Registered lobbyists spent about 16 percent less on wining and dining lawmakers in a recent six-month period compared to just before a corruption scandal involving former Gov. Bob McDonnell changed how things operate in Virginia politics. An analysis of newly filed disclosure forms shows lobbyists reported spending $456,000 on entertaining lawmakers and other officials between November and April. Two years ago, before McDonnell was completely engulfed in a gifts scandal with a vitamin salesman, that figure was $541,000. Lawmakers passed a new $100 gift limit earlier this year, which will go into effect next year. A jury in September found McDonnell and his wife, Maureen, guilty of doing favors for former Star Scientific CEO Jonnie Williams in exchange for more than $165,000 in gifts and loans.

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