Mr. Rove has described Mr. Abramoff as a “casual acquaintance,” but the records obtained by the House committee show that Mr. Rove and his aides sought Mr. Abramoff’s help in obtaining seats at sporting events, and that Mr. Rove sat with Mr. Abramoff in the lobbyist’s box seats for an N.C.A.A. basketball playoff game in 2002.
After that game, Mr. Abramoff described Mr. Rove in an e-mail message to a colleague: “He’s a great guy. Told me anytime we need something just let him know through Susan.” The message was referring to Susan Ralson, Mr. Abramoff’s former secretary, who joined the White House in February 2001 as Mr. Rove’s executive assistant.
Ms. Ralston, who did not return phone calls seeking comment Thursday, was lobbied scores of times by Mr. Abramoff and his partners, the report found, and was instrumental in passing messages between Mr. Abramoff and senior officials at the White House, including Mr. Rove and Ken Mehlman.
Mr. Mehlman, now chairman of the Republican National Committee, was then a senior White House political strategist. A national committee spokeswoman, Tracey Schmitt, said Thursday that in Mr. Mehlman’s White House job, “it was not unusual” that he “would be in contact with supporters who had interest in administration policy.”
In October 2001, the report said, Mr. Abramoff asked the White House to withhold an endorsement from a Republican candidate for governor of the Northern Marianas Islands, an American commonwealth in the western Pacific where Mr. Abramoff had clients; Mr. Abramoff was backing another candidate.
On Oct. 31, 2001, the report said, Ms. Ralson sent an e-mail message to Mr. Abramoff that read: “You win :) KR said no endorsement.”
The revolution will not come through "smileys".