Court backs Boehner in McDermott suit

Rep. Jim McDermottJim McDermott19 House Democrats' sites hacked at close of gun sit-in 'Will on the Hill' pokes fun at 2016 election Overnight Healthcare: House mental health bill finally moving forward MORE (D-Wash.) has lost his latest attempt to end a lawsuit filed by House Majority Leader John BoehnerJohn BoehnerDem drops out of race for Boehner's old seat Conservative allies on opposite sides in GOP primary fight Clinton maps out first 100 days MORE (R-Ohio) over a phone call illegally taped 10 years ago.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit yesterday ruled in BoehnerJohn BoehnerDem drops out of race for Boehner's old seat Conservative allies on opposite sides in GOP primary fight Clinton maps out first 100 days MORE’s favor. In a divided opinion, the court let a previous ruling stand that would have McDermott pay $60,000 in damages to Boehner as well as attorney fees and costs.

By press time, McDermott’s office did not comment on whether the congressman would file an appeal.

In 1996, McDermott distributed an illegally taped phone conference among House GOP members who were discussing how to deal with an ethics investigation against then-Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.). Boehner at that time was the chairman of the House Republican Conference, and McDermott was the ranking member on the House Ethics Committee.

The phone call was intercepted on a police scanner by a Florida couple, who delivered it to McDermott. The couple, John and Alice Martin, pleaded guilty to intercepting the call.