Panel ends debate on gov tickets, campaign cash

COLUMBIA, SC (AP) - A South Carolina legislative panel considering whether to oust Gov. Mark Sanford will not consider state ethics charges that accuse the two-term Republican of improperly flying in expensive airline seats and reimbursing himself from campaign funds.

Members of a House Judiciary Committee panel on Thursday voted to remove 28 of 37 State Ethics Commission charges from its debate over whether the governor should be impeached.

[Read a list of questions on which the panel was focused.]

Lawmakers are reviewing other civil charges, mostly involving his use of state aircraft. An ethics hearing is to consider all the charges early next year and could bring thousands in fines.

The Republican has faced scrutiny since he returned in June from a five-day absence and revealed a yearlong affair with a woman in Argentina.

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