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Special Report

Aide to a Presidential Contender Is Accused of Pretending to Be a State Trooper

Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

Aide Investigated

The director of operations for the Mitt Romney presidential campaign has taken a leave of absence while he is being investigated for allegedly impersonating a state trooper.

The New Hampshire Attorney General's office is looking into a claim by a New York Times reporter that Romney aides illegally stopped his vehicle.

The reporter says Romney aide Jay Garrity then told him that he had checked the reporter's license plate. Romney's campaign and Garrity's lawyer deny this.

Meanwhile the New Hampshire state police are following up on another claim that Garrity called a Wilmington plumbing company to complain about dangerous driving by one of its employees — and identified himself as a state police trooper.

Garrity's attorney says this is not true and the Romney campaign says Garrity was not on duty the day of the call.

Garrity was cited three years ago for having flashing lights and other police equipment in his car without permission.

Pensions for Criminals?

Congress is once again this year considering legislation that would stop pensions for members of Congress convicted of serious crimes.

Cybercast News reports bills have passed the House and Senate and await Conference Committee action — where they have quietly died in years past.

But the federal indictment of Louisiana Democratic Congressman William Jefferson

has brought new attention to the issue.

If convicted Jefferson would still receive a taxpayer-funded pension of $53,000/year, Republican Duke Cunningham — who is in prison — gets $64,000/year. And Democrat Dan Rostenkowski — who pleaded guilty to mail fraud — is pulling in $126,000 annually.

The National Taxpayers Union reports that more than a dozen convicted felons who were in Congress are receiving pensions totaling more than $900,000/year.

Secrets Revealed

Next week the CIA will release documents detailing some of the agency's illegal activity over several decades.

The Washington Post reports the so-called "family jewels" will include information on overseas assassination attempts, break-ins, thefts, wiretaps, and surveillance on journalists.

One of the reporters mentioned as being under surveillance was our own Brit Hume — when he worked for columnist Jack Anderson in 1972.

Most of the major incidents covered in the newly-released documents have been revealed over the years — but the new information is expected to provide much more detail into the specifics of the operations.

"Legislative Fix"

And Republican Senator James Inhofe said on FOX this afternoon that a conversation he overheard between Democrats Hillary Clinton and Barbara Boxer about wanting a "legislative fix" for conservative talk radio — occurred three years ago.

Inhofe told a Los Angeles radio station yesterday that he overheard the senators complaining about something they had heard on the air — "the other day."

Inhofe quoted the two senators as saying — "We've got to do something about this. These are nothing but far right-wing extremists. We've got to have a balance. There's got to be a legislative fix to this."

But the offices of both Senator Clinton and Senator Boxer had the same response to FOX News — saying the conversation never happened.

And today Inhofe clarified the timeline on his story ... and said he's recounted the three-year-old conversation well over 100 times on radio and TV since then.

—FOX News Channel's Martin Hill contributed to this report.