Disgraced California lawmaker denies affairs

September 10, 2009 7:40:08 PM PDT
A state lawmaker caught on tape bragging about his sexual exploits now says he made it up. Former Assemblyman Mike Duvall has resigned, but is claiming he is guilty of inappropriate storytelling -- not adultery. Regardless, there seems to be plenty of hanky-panky that is taking place in Sacramento.

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Former Assemblyman Mike Duvall (R-Yorba Linda) is backtracking one day after he resigned over a sex scandal where he was caught on tape talking about his extra-marital affairs with at least two lobbyists.

RAW VIDEO: Duvall discusses details of affair while in a committee hearing

The married, 54-year-old, Orange County Republican now says his resignation is in no way an admission of any affairs.

"My offense was engaging in inappropriate storytelling and I regret my language and choice of words," Duvall said in a statement.

As the Assembly Ethics Committee looks into his behavior, some government watchdog groups think Attorney General Jerry Brown should launch criminal investigation.

While Brown wants to first wait for the committee's report, California Common Cause says laws could have been broken.

"That could be tantamount to bribery or violating gift rules for the Assembly," California Common Cause spokesperson Derek Cressman said.

The Duvall scandal sheds light on what some say is actually commonplace in Sacramento -- lawmakers and lobbyists trading sexual favors.

One Capitol insider wants to remain anonymous because of the risk of losing his job.

ABC7: "How often does this happen between California lawmakers and lobbyists?"

'John': "It's been going on for years. It makes my job tougher. If I have to compete against someone who wants to engage in prostitution to get a piece of legislation passed, that's not something I'm willing to do for my client, and so it gives them a leg up, and it really dirties up the process."

Well-financed lobbyists are cramming the Capitol hallways this week because it is their last chance to influence lawmakers before session ends Friday.

That gives little chance for ordinary Californians to have a voice, says the insider.

"The problem is, the people in the Capitol don't talk about this and it's very incestuous and it's festering and the people of California have a right to be worried," he said.

Assemblyman Jeff Miller (R-Corona), who was listening to Duvall talk about his sexual escapades during the committee hearing, has been removed from the ethics committee because of a possible conflict of interest. Miller denies he leaked the tape to the media.

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