House subcommittee investigates bribe charges in Medicare bill

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The House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct has said it will establish a subcommittee to investigate allegations that Rep. Nick Smith (R-MI) was offered a bribe to vote for last year's Medicare reform law. Smith ultimately voted against the bill.

The subcommittee will look at charges that Smith was bribed with support for his son's congressional candidacy if he voted for the legislation. The Medicare reform law passed the House in a 220-215 vote last November and has been dogged recently by allegations that the Bush administration suppressed program cost estimates that were much higher than stated at the time of the vote.