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Lt. Gov. Fetterman Defends Gov. Tom Wolf's Ethics In Pipeline Investigation

PITTSBURGH (KDKA)-- The FBI is reportedly investigating whether Governor Wolf's administration improperly issued building permits for the Mariner East Pipeline.

Environmental groups say the administration pushed through incomplete permits in violation of the law.

"I can say without a doubt that his integrity and his standards and ethics are of the highest order," Lt. Gov. John Fetterman told KDKA political editor Jon Delano on Wednesday.

Fetterman was the keynote speaker in Pittsburgh at the recognition luncheon of the Northside Community Development Fund.

Fetterman reacted to an Associated Press report that the FBI is investigating Wolf and his administration's handling of permits for a $3 billion pipeline project across the state.

"Reasonable people can agree or disagree on whether there should have been a pipeline, but I don't have any doubts that Governor Wolf has always maintained the highest ethical standards."

Based on anonymous sources, the AP says the FBI is questioning current and former state employees about the permitting process for the Mariners East Pipeline.

That pipeline will carry natural gas liquids from the Marcellus shale fields in this region to an overseas export terminal near Philadelphia.

Wolf supports the project, which is opposed by some environmentalists who accuse the governor of pushing it with incomplete permits.

The FBI, says the AP, is investigating whether anyone in the Wolf administration forced permit approvals or took anything in exchange.

Delano: "You're saying you don't think the governor took anything?"

Fetterman: "I'm saying I know the governor didn't take anything. This is a guy that if he's offered a bottle of water at an event, he'll hand you a dollar bill and say, 'Thank you, but I can't even accept a bottle of water.'"

Fetterman says this governor has enacted the strictest code of ethics ever

The governor's office had no comment, but Fetterman says the inquiry is welcomed.

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