John Hickenlooper defies subpoena to appear for virtual hearing on ethics complaint

John Hickenlooper defies subpoena to appear for virtual hearing on ethics complaint
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Former Colorado governor and Senate candidate John HickenlooperJohn HickenlooperThe Hill's Campaign Report: Colorado, Utah primary results bring upsets, intrigue The Hill's Morning Report - Republicans shift, urge people to wear masks Hickenlooper beats back progressive challenge in Colorado primary MORE (D) refused to comply with a subpoena to testify virtually in front of the state's Independent Ethics Commission about alleged violations of Colorado law, the Denver Post reported Thursday.

The commission is looking into whether Hickenlooper violated a ban on gifts for occasions when he flew on private jet flights as governor. Hickenlooper has denied any wrongdoing.

Hickenlooper has said he would be willing to testify in person but has argued that a virtual hearing would violate his rights for due process and the right to face his accusers in person, according to the Denver Post.

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A spokeswoman for the former governor told the newspaper that Hickenlooper would be willing to testify in person.

“John Hickenlooper has made clear he will testify in person. Today’s debacle of a hearing has made clear that WebEx doesn’t work for a legal proceeding like this,” said Melissa Miller, a spokeswoman for Hickenlooper. “We will be opposing the motion to enforce the subpoena."

The ethics panel nevertheless proceeded with the hearing and voted 5-0 to request the state attorney general's office enforce the subpoena.

The Hill has reached out to Hickenlooper for comment.

Hickenlooper is facing a complaint from Public Trust Institute, a conservative group that calls for increased transparency among elected officials, that he accepted flights from businesses in violation of state law. The former governor has strongly defended the flights, and accused PTI of playing politics.

Hickenlooper is running for Senate and faces a primary on June 30. The winner will face off against Sen. Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerThe Hill's Campaign Report: Colorado, Utah primary results bring upsets, intrigue The Hill's Morning Report - Republicans shift, urge people to wear masks Hickenlooper beats back progressive challenge in Colorado primary MORE (R) in the fall.