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Pennsylvania State Rep. William DeWeese Testifies at His Corruption Trial

(William DeWeese, outside the courtroom where he is on trial for corruption. Credit: Tony Romeo)

(William DeWeese, outside the courtroom where he is on trial for corruption. Credit: Tony Romeo)

(Capitol dome, Harrisburg, Pa.   File photo) Tony Romeo
  Tony Romeo is Harrisburg bureau chief for KYW Newsradio...
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By Tony Romeo

HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) — Former Pennsylvania House speaker William DeWeese took the stand today as testimony in his public corruption trial drew to a close.

DeWeese, who is still a member of the House but no longer its speaker, is accused of using his staff and other taxpayer resources for campaign purposes (see previous story).

Today, during almost three hours on the witness stand in his own defense, DeWeese said he delegated authority during his years in House Democratic leadership, and insists that he never put pressure on staffers to campaign for him.

DeWeese insists that he cooperated fully for years with the Pennsylvania attorney general’s office in its investigation of alleged legislative corruption.

Under cross-examination, the prosecution attempted to show that even if DeWeese himself didn’t pressure staffers to do campaign work, his senior staffers did.

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