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A lot was strange about FreshPAC, the late political action committee created to help Muriel Bowser. Still, maybe the strangest FreshPAC story involved PAC chairman Earl “Chico” Horton, who registered as a lobbyist for Chicago power company Exelon just days before Bowser made a controversial settlement with Exelon and Pepco over their proposed merger.

The coziness of one of the mayor’s most influential supporters lobbying her administration was hard to ignore. But now Horton, in lobbying disclosures filed this month with the Board of Ethics and Government Accountability, claims he didn’t actually do any lobbying of the District government on the utility takeover.

In a portion of the disclosure form intended to list any lobbying he did on behalf of Exelon with District officials, Horton doesn’t name any contacts with District officials. What gives?

In an email to LL, Horton claims that he didn’t receive any money from Exelon to lobby. Instead, he registered as a lobbyist for Exelon “in an abundance of caution”—and then, according to him, didn’t end up doing any lobbying.

That doesn’t mean Horton and his law firm got nothing from their relationship with Exelon. In an email, Horton says Exelon retained for unnamed “strategic advisory and certain legal matters.”

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

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