Grand jury subpoenas Doolittle aides

A grand jury has subpoenaed Rep. John Doolittle’s (R-Calif.) chief of staff and deputy chief of staff to testify about evidence uncovered in an FBI probe into his and his wife’s ties to jailed lobbyist Jack Abramoff.

The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia subpoenaed Chief of Staff Ron Rogers and Deputy Chief of Staff Dan Blankenburg. As House rules mandate, Rogers and Blankenburg notified Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) about the subpoenas, which House aides say were announced on the House floor Tuesday, the day Congress returned from its recess.

The FBI searched Doolittle’s Oakton, Va., home in April in an attempt to gain information about Sierra Dominion, a fundraising company operated by his wife, Julie, that received payments from Abramoff.

Doolittle has denied any wrongdoing. After the raid on his home became public, Doolittle stepped down from his Appropriations Committee assignment.

Jason Larrabee, who spent two years as Doolittle’s legislative director, dropped out of his race for a state Assembly seat in June. At the time, his previous boss, former Rep. Doug Ose (R-Calif.), said Larrabee had told him that he was dropping out of the campaign because he and his wife wanted to have a family.