July 30th, 2014
12:09 PM ET
3 months ago

Pentagon watchdog to review plagiarism probe of Sen. John Walsh

(CNN) - The Defense Department’s inspector general will review the academic investigation of plagiarism allegations against Sen. John Walsh.

The Montana Democrat is accused of not properly attributing certain material in a paper to complete his master's degree at the Army War College.

Carol Kerr, the school’s spokeswoman, said it would launch an Academic Review Board to look into the matter.

The results and any recommendations will be forwarded to the Defense Department IG for its “consideration.”

The New York Times first reported last week that a review of a 2007 final paper suggests the decorated Iraq war veteran “appropriated at least a quarter of his thesis on American Middle East policy from other authors’ works, with no attribution.”

Material from a Carnegie Endowment for International Peace report and a 1998 essay by a Harvard scholar were included in the paper without proper sourcing, the Times reported.

Walsh's reelection campaign acknowledged "the citations were not all done correctly," but insisted it was an "unintentional mistake."

Walsh later told the Associated Press he was suffering from post-traumatic stress after his Iraq deployment.

Kerr said it is "standard policy" for the Pentagon IG to review its work, although this will be the first time the war college's Academic Review Board has convened for a member of Congress.

The board plans to meet no sooner than August 15, after which it will recommend whether punitive action should be taken.

The head of the college will ultimately decide what action is taken in the case.

Walsh also is the former head of Montana’s National Guard and was already facing a tough reelection challenge in the conservative state against GOP candidate Rep. Steve Daines.

The latest controversy further jeopardizes Democratic chances of maintaining control of the Senate, as Republicans must win six seats to overtake them.

Complete coverage of the 2014 midterm elections

Walsh stepped down as Montana's lieutenant governor after he was appointed to the Senate in February to replace Max Baucus, who is now ambassador to China.

CNN's Dana Davidsen, Barbara Starr, Jamie Crawford, Leigh Ann Caldwell and Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.


Filed under: 2014 • Department of Defense • Montana
soundoff (20 Responses)
  1. Rudy NYC

    Walsh also is the former head of Montana’s National Guard and was already facing a tough reelection challenge in the conservative state against GOP candidate Rep. Steve Daines.
    --------------------------–
    Is it too late to replace him on the ballot?

    July 30, 2014 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  2. J Berry

    Do the right thing and RESIGN! This is another example power corrupts.

    July 30, 2014 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  3. old age voter

    @ Rudy NYC - it's never to late to replace Democrats on the ballot, just look back to New Jersey and how Frank Lautenberg got elected; for Democrats; doesn't not matter if its legal or not.

    July 30, 2014 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  4. old age voter

    Another fact; it's always good to replace a Democrat; especially with a candidate from another party.

    July 30, 2014 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  5. Gurgyl

    -listen, this is a people-elect office, it shouldn't , and ought not have qualification, further, it is long gone thing. This is another nasty trick of GOP stuff. Instead this, they better pass gun-control.

    July 30, 2014 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  6. Dead Bear

    The man never had any real chance of keeping this seat in Democrat hands. To paint this race as the deciding factor of who has the majority in the Senate, to put it lightly, is a bit overblown. Kinda like the assertions that all of the Senators in competitive races are the one who cast the "deciding" vote on Obamacare.

    July 30, 2014 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  7. Dave

    He was just following VP Joe (bite-me) Biden's lead

    July 30, 2014 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  8. Dave

    I wonder what the over/under number is on how many seats the democrats lose in the Senate this election?

    July 30, 2014 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  9. Malory Archer

    Dave

    He was just following VP Joe (bite-me) Biden's lead

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Let's at least keep the plagiarism actors current: He was just following rant (AquaBuddah) paul's lead.

    July 30, 2014 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  10. O'drama ya Mama

    When Rand Paul plagiarized Wikipedia all he had so say was he didnt know. Those here asking this senator to resign should be doing the same to Rand Paul.

    July 30, 2014 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  11. lionel

    Didn't Rand Paul do the same thing.

    July 30, 2014 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  12. Silence DoGood

    @old age voter
    Another fact; it's always good to replace a Democrat; especially with a candidate from another party.
    --------------
    Liberals say replace a guy if he has done something wrong.
    Conservatives say replace a Dem or liberal just because.
    Which group sound more intelligence?
    (homeschool TP folks – the question is rhetorical)

    July 30, 2014 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  13. Robert

    Oh my gosh, PTSD? Really? "The dog ate my homework and I had to plagiarize!"

    July 30, 2014 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  14. yolanda

    Yup @ Gurgyl, yet another right wing conspiracy emanating from the NY Times.......please.

    July 30, 2014 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  15. Thomas

    As long as he wasn't buying Crack on K street , it's no big deal.

    The guy went and fought in Iraq for his country , did any of Mitt Romney's five sons ?

    Prep school must be nice , it's not who thought of an idea , it's who steals it .

    July 30, 2014 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  16. PaulCat

    ...and then there's Rand Paul

    July 30, 2014 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  17. Fair is Fair

    Dave

    I wonder what the over/under number is on how many seats the democrats lose in the Senate this election?
    ---------–
    Between 6 and 7, according to the average of polls (RealClearPolitics) and statistics (Nate Silver).

    July 30, 2014 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  18. yolanda

    @Thomas, are any of Romney's 5 sons running for office, or is this just rudderless hate on your part? I thought so.

    July 30, 2014 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  19. Fair is Fair

    Rudy NYC

    Walsh also is the former head of Montana’s National Guard and was already facing a tough reelection challenge in the conservative state against GOP candidate Rep. Steve Daines.
    --------––
    Is it too late to replace him on the ballot?
    ----------
    Montana's oh-so-wise Democratic Governor sure made the right call appointing this guy (his Lt. Governonr, by the way). Thansk!!!!!

    July 30, 2014 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  20. William Jackson

    When is the Rand Paul investigation going to commence, Oh forgot it a pass when its a rightist!

    July 30, 2014 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |