The split between a maverick junior member and the rest of the House [LINE ILLEGIBLE] into South Korea influencebuying in Congress [WORD ILLEGIBLE] yesterday.
[WORD ILLEGIBLE] source of tension [WORD ILLEGIBLE] Rep. Bruce F. Caputo (R.N.Y.) [WORD ILLEGIBLE] other members was a United Press International report yesterday it quoted as unnamed member - generally recognized as Caputo - as [WORD ILLEGIBLE] that one of his staff aides had [WORD ILLEGIBLE] to the maitre d' of a Capitol [WORD ILLEGIBLE] restaurant last week shortly [WORD ILLEGIBLE] the restaurant employee was [WORD ILLEGIBLE]
The story was especially irritating some members of the committee because they voted in closed session next week to forbid such independent investigations. A few days later, two New York City papers reported the [WORD ILLEGIBLE] "gag" rule on Caputo and his [WORD ILLEGIBLE]
Caputo, a freshman, who is the most junior member of the committee, has [WORD ILLEGIBLE] some notoriety - and a lot of [WORD ILLEGIBLE] - by his agressive attempts to make the committee move faster in the inquiry of members who took cash and gifts from agents of teh South Korean government.
Just last Wednesday, Rep. James Quillen (R-Tenn.) accused Caputo of headline hunting when he unsuccessfully tried to force committee members to swear under oath that they themselves had never accepted gifts from foreign governments.
Committee members were rankled that day when The Washington Star bannered that Caputo effort across the top of page one before the committee had even met.
Caputo said in a telephone interview yesterday that he could not comment on the UPI report or the New York papers' stories that the committee had stopped his personal investigation.
"I will say that it is utterly unconstitutional for any committee to tell a member that he can't talk to someone or that he can't ask questions," Caputo said.
It is no secret to those following the ethics committee investigation that Caputo aides Dick Leggitt and Bill Dielendorfer have been making their over [WORD ILLEGIBLE] into the South Korean allegations. They also declined comment yesterday on the recent news reported.
The UPI story said that an aide to the unidentified committee member approached Alexis Goodarzi (also sometimes spelled Goodarsinia), the [WORD ILLEGIBLE] of the Rotunda restaurant, two days before Goodarzi was found murdered. He had been shot three times in the head, in a manner reserabling a professional execution.
The unnamed member of the ethics committee told UPI that his aide wa "checking out rumors of wrongdoing, including by members of Congress, at the restaurant." He said he wanted Goodarzi to testify before the ethics committee, but declined further comment, saying he had turned over all his information on the matter to the committee.
Philip A. Lacovara, the committee's special counsel for the investigation said yesterday that he was not aware of any such information being turned over to his investigators. He added that he thought it would be "idle and baseless speculation" to link Goodarzi's death in any way with the charges of South Korean influence buying.
Police investigators said yesterday that they have uncovered no evidence connecting Goodarzi with South Koreans.