July 12, 2002

Bush Took Oil Firm's Loans as Director
Practice Would Be Banned in President's New Corporate Abuse Policy

By Mike Allen
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, July 11, 2002; Page A01

As a Texas businessman, President Bush took two low-interest loans from an oil company where he was a member of the board of directors, engaging in a practice he condemned this week in his plan to stem corporate abuse and accounting fraud.

Bush accepted loans totaling $180,375 from Harken Energy Corp. in 1986 and 1988, according to Securities and Exchange Commission filings. Bush was a director of Harken from 1986 to 1993, after he sold his failed oil and gas exploration concern to the company. He used the loans to buy Harken stock.

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Florida's Privatized Tax Audits To Continue

Jul 10, 2002

TALLAHASSEE - Despite eroding confidence in corporate accounting nationwide, Florida wants more companies to hire private firms to perform tax audits to ease the Department of Revenue's workload.
The push is part of a test project supported by Gov. Jeb Bush and kept alive this year by the Florida Legislature. It is intended to encourage corporations to use independent, state-certified auditors rather than the state tax agency.

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Where was George?

by Spencer Ackerman


Will George W. Bush turn out to be 2002's version of Ivan Boesky? The thought has obviously occurred to Bush's critics, who are asking all sorts of questions about a decade-old stock transaction that has the whiff of insider trading. And it has obviously occurred to Bush's staff in the White House, who are furiously, and a bit desperately, trying to show their boss did nothing illegal.

At issue is Bush's conduct during 1990, when he served on the board of the Harken Energy Corporation. Bush sold about $850,000 in Harken stock just two months before the company, under orders from the SEC, announced that it was restating its balance sheet, revealing a $23 million loss.

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Amid Accusations, SEC Seats in Limbo

By Kathleen Day
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, July 12, 2002; Page E01

Bickering between the White House and Senate Democrats has prevented the five-member Securities and Exchange Commission from being fully manned at a time when the nation's securities markets face their worst crisis in decades.

Senate Banking Committee Chairman Paul S. Sarbanes (D-Md.) yesterday said the White House has needlessly delayed the selection of four SEC nominees to sit beside SEC Chairman Harvey Pitt, a Bush appointee who has come under fire for his close ties to the accounting industry.
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