he gave Yarborough $50,000, had stated in stories by Jimmy Banks that Estes’ two alleged witnesses, Ernest Keeton and James Fonville, had “passed” lie detector tests given by the D.P.S. that indicated they had told the truth in backing up Estes. Keeton told the F.B.I., just before the primary vote which Yarborough won, that he had not seen the moriey pass, as he had first said he had. The Justice Department’s unqualified conclusion presumably was based on the inquiries that were made by its investigative branch, the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Although the fact was not generally reported in the Texas press, reporters in Washington asked the Justice Department for comment on the Dallas News stories about Keeton’s and Fonville’s lie detector tests, and the Justice Department responded: “We stand on the statement we made following the completion of a full and extensive investigation.” In other words, the Justice Department insists that it knows exactly what it’s talking about and the Dallas News is wrong. The Justice Department statement said, en Coto: “Allegations of a $50,000 payment made on Nov. 6, 1960, to Senator Yarborough of Texas by Billie Sol Estes have been thoroughly investigated by the Department of Justice. Such a payment, if made, would have constituted a violation of federal law. The department’s investigation found the allegation to be without any foundation in fact and unsupported by credible testimony. The case is closed.” Yarborough issued a statement in response that “The people of Texas heard the witnesses in the closing days of last April and on May 2 brought in a verdict that this charge was an infamous lie.” During his contest for his party’s nomination, Bush refrained from asserting that the $50,000 story was true, but made the most of the charge having been made. The Observer heard Bush state on television that Yarborough had admitted that he had taken money “from Billy Sol Estes, a convicted criminal.” \(Yarborough of course long ago made public Estes’ campaign contributions to him before Estes got in After he was nominated, Bush remarked, “People were repulsed by the tactics in the Yarborough-McLendon campaign. I want to give the people -something to be for instead of against.” This month Bush has made it clear that he will echo some of the themes extracted from the $50,000 story. by McLendon. ON AUG. 30, the News stated that Keeton “has passed a lie detector test on his statements concerning money” Estes says he gave Yarborough, and that “The News learned that the polygraph test affirmed [Keeton’s] contention that he was telling the truth last April in a sworn statement [that] said he saw Estes give a large amount of money to Yarborough. . . .” Later in this story, the News said “Estes 6 The Texas Observer and . . . James Fonville . . . also had given sworn statements . . . saying the money involved was $50,000 in cash.” This story thus omitted from consideration Keeton’s original contention, reported April 19 by the News and subsequently repudiated by Keeton, that he heard Estes tell Yarborough, ” ‘Here is the $50,000 you wanted.’ ” That is, the News’ Aug. 30 story confined its account of Keeton’s alleged recanting on his recanting to “a large amount of money.” Yarborough has flatly denied Estes handed him anything; the $900 he was given that day to defray his campaign costs was handed him, he said, by another man, and only about $400 of it had been contributed by Estes. On Sept. 1, Bush responded to these developments by saying the Justice Department’s closing of the case was premature. He noted that the News’ story preceded by a day the Justice Department’s announcement and remarked about this, “How strange.” Thereupon he said: “1.If the Texas Department of Public Safety has its complete findings available on a lie detector test taken by Keeton, it should release them. “2.If these results are officially released and Yarborough does not agree with them, he should submit himself to the DPS for a lie detector test.” Taking up the Dallas News report and propoSing Yarborough take a lie detector test, Bush adopted two of the campaign procedures used by Gordon McLendon in the Democratic primary against Yarborough. Yarborough’s position on his taking a test is that the suggestion is an insult to the Senate. McLendon made it obvious that he is still after Yarborough’s. scalp. He slammed the J.D. statement for what he called “tortured logic” in light of the News story about Keeton and Fonville sticking by his story. Connally should release the D.P.S. findings, and Yarborough should resign, McLendon said. Yarborough was quoted in an interview that the D.P.S. has never approached him in its apparent investigation and asked what the state agency had to do with a federal question. This evoked, from Bush, a news release prepared for release from Sherman \(in fact Bush did not read from trying to “squash state investigating and police agencies.” The News on Sept. 11, in a story which it spread across the top of its front-page and bannered, “Fonville Passes Lie Test on $50,000 Question,” said the test “indicated Fonville was telling the truth when he said’ he counted the money in the presence of the two men, handed it to Estes and saw him give it to Yarborough.” Fonville was quoted, ” ‘I appreciate the Department of Public Safety giving me an opportunity to make my side clear.’ ” The governor told a press conference, “It is a long-standing policy of the Department of Public Safety that no comment is ever made while an investigation is going on.” Last Friday Bush charged that the Jus tice Department “has whitewashed the whole affair,” seemed to commit himself to the Dallas News account by saying “It is extremely noteworthy to know that Mr. Fonville . . . passed his test,” and called on the D.P.S. to make a public report. BILLIE SOL ESTES is the other principal in this matter. been whisperings that he may do something to shore up his charge against Yarborough. Estes gave the New York Times an interview in August, declaring that if plans materialize, his name will go up over a nationwide chain of hotels and motels, facsimile “wild west” towns, and curio shops. Since he’s bankrupt, he would be an adviser only. He still drives a Cadillac. On Aug. 18 the U.S. government asked federal district court in El Paso to revoke Estes’ bond and send him to prison immediately on a 15-year fraud sentence. Estes is also living in the dark shadow of an eight-year state sentence for fraud. Both are being appealed, but the eight-judge Fifth U.S. Court of Appeals has affirmed the 15-year federal sentence. Estes’ lawyers have retorted to the government’s motion to imprison him with a request for a new hearing before the fifth circuit court. Issue in Crockett Did citizens of Crockett, in East Texas, lose any of the $60,000 they put up as their share of the cost of establishing an Area Reconstruction Administration-backed new industry in Crockett, which subsequently fell through? The answer to this is noapparently they’ve made money on their ante. Did Sen. Ralph Yarborough, acting in the name of the White House, endorse this project for Crockett before it fell through? The answer to this is yes. September’s Reader’s Digest contends that J. Paul Dawson, president of Audio Electronics, Inc., was not adequately investigated, as to his previous legal difficulties, before A.R.A. approved a loan of $383,000 to Audio Electronics to build a manufactory in Crockett. According ‘to the Digest, Benton Musslewhite, Lufkin lawyer who ran for Congress twice against Cong. John Dowdy, Athens, and lost each time, lent his prestige to the projecta statement for which Musslewhite says he is considering suing the Digestand Yarborough, by a telephoneloudspeaker hook-up from Washington, told about 35 Crockett people in March, 1963, that he was authorized from the White House to announce “that you are going to gain a fine new industryone that will provide new jobs fOr 180 people, add new strength to your area,” and addressed a large crowd at a barbecue in Crockett two days before the construction was to start. It did not, and the project was dropped. The Digest did not say what happened to the $60,000 the townsfolk had raised to pay for the plant site and provide the required proof of local interest. Critics of the article contend it implied that the money was lost. This criticism would proceed from the Digest’s statement that “Because people believed that their Senator’s ‘White House
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