War College revokes Sen. John Walsh’s master’s degree

Sen. John Walsh, shown here in February with his son, Michael, ended his re-election campaign Aug. 7 in the wake of plagiarism claims. (AP file Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke)

The U.S. Army War College has revoked Democratic U.S. Sen. John Walsh’s master’s degree in the wake of allegations that he plagiarized large portions of a 2007 paper.

The college launched its investigation in August after the New York Times broke the story that Walsh, who Gov. Steve Bullock appointed to the Senate post in February, copied significant portions of the 14-page paper required for his master’s degree.

Walsh ended his re-election campaign Aug. 7 in the wake of the scandal.

Walsh’s office released a statement Friday afternoon saying the interim senator disagreed with the college’s findings, but accepted the decision “with great humility and respect for the U.S. military.”

“I apologize to all Montanans for the plagiarism in my 2007 paper, and I am prepared to live with its consequences,” Walsh said in the statement. “I may not be a scholar but I am proud to have been a soldier who has served Montana and this great nation for 33 years in uniform.”

Carol Kerr, spokeswoman for the Army War College, told the Tribune on Friday that the college completed its academic review board process on Friday, in accordance with its academic policy to examine the allegations of plagiarism against Walsh. Kerr said Walsh was notified Friday of the final decision to revoke his status as a graduate.

Walsh was a colonel in the Montana National Guard at the time.

“The college followed the same proceedings as with every student or graduate. The board found that then Col. John Walsh did commit the offense of plagiarism and thus his master’s degree and status as graduate of the U.S. Army War College should be revoked,” Kerr said. “Mr. Walsh was afforded opportunities to submit comment and/or materials during the process. Reviews of legal sufficiency were completed.”

Read more at the Great Falls Tribune.