Republican lawmakers are crying foul because Governor Terry McAuliffe rejected a piece of ethics legislation Friday. The bill would have prevented him from accepting gifts and contributions from companies seeking state development funds.
Ethics has been one of the more sensitive political topics this year, especially as former Governor Bob McDonnell prepares for trial on corruption charges this summer. This bill would have prevented the governor and his political action committee from accepting gifts or contributions worth more than $50 from companies seeking loans or grants from a state economic development fund.
It passed with unanimous support earlier this year but Friday morning, McAuliffe vetoed the measure, after unsuccessfully pushing for the same rules to apply to lawmakers, who also play a role in awarding economic development funds.
Speaker of the House of Delegates Bill Howell called the veto a "step in the wrong direction."
The governor's office is defending his decision, pointing out he voluntarily imposed new ethics rules on himself and his family upon taking office.
The bill’s sponsor, Northern Virginia Republican Jim LeMunyon, says he plans to reintroduce the measure in 2015.