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Blair Rejects New Calls for Prescott Probe

Prime Minister Tony Blair rejected renewed calls for investigations on his second in command John Prescott. Legislators have recently found that Prescott may have indeed broken ethics rules by not having declared his stay at the estate of a super casino bidder immediately after it commenced.

Prescott has been in hot water over allegations that he is being biased and using political influence to win the favor towards the Millennium Dome casino bid, a property owned by casino magnate Philip Anschutz.

Blair has likewise been under tremendous pressure from the controversies surrounding Prescott. The prime minister has previously been prodded to personally order an independent investigation.

Parliamentary ethics watchdog Philip Mawer who was tasked to investigate Prescott has cleared him of breaking rules for members of parliament by waiting months to the Colorado ranch visit, which led to the reviewing parliamentary committee to take no action against Prescott.

However, the body also said that Prescott may have broken a more restrictive ethics code for Cabinet ministers, and only Blair has the power to enforce this.

Reportedly, Prescott had failed promptly "to address, as the ministerial code requires, whether the proposed hospitality was on a scale or from a source which might reasonably be thought likely to influence ministerial action," the committee said.

It also suggested changing the rules so that Blair was no longer solely responsible for enforcing his Cabinet's compliance with ethics guidelines.

Blair's spokesman however, said Blair saw no need for a new investigation. "The prime minister believes that is an end of it," he said.


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