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Montana Sen. John Walsh stripped of master’s degree for plagiarism

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The U.S. Army War College has revoked the master’s degree of U.S. Senator John Walsh of Montana, the result of a plagiarism scandal that prompted him in August to abandon his election bid, both Walsh and the college said on Friday.

“The board found that then-Colonel John Walsh did commit the offense of plagiarism and thus his master’s degree and status as a graduate of the U.S. Army War College should be revoked,” said Carol Kerr, a spokeswoman for the college, located in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.

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Walsh, a Democrat, had been appointed to the Senate by Montana Governor Steve Bullock after U.S. Senator Max Baucus was named ambassador to China.

“Though I disagree with the findings made by the War College, I accept its decision,” Walsh said in a statement. “I apologize to all Montanans for the plagiarism in my 2007 paper and I am prepared to live with the consequences.”

The New York Times first reported in July that about a quarter of the material in Walsh’s 14-page thesis paper may have been lifted from other academic works.

Walsh is an Iraq War veteran and former commander of the Montana National Guard.

One-term state representative Amanda Curtis, the new Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate seat, is trailing some 20 percentage points behind Republican U.S. Representative Steve Daines in recent polls.

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(Reporting by Jeffrey B. Roth in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.; Writing by Scott Malone)


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