WASHINGTON (AP) - House Speaker John Boehner says it's dangerous for a fellow Republican to allege that an aide to Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton has family ties to Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood.

Minnesota Republican Michele Bachmann wrote a letter to the State Department last month with other Republicans about Huma Abedin. The letter said Abedin's late father, mother and brother were connected to Muslim Brotherhood operations.  Bachmann asked in a separate letter how Abedin received security clearance.

Boehner says that while he doesn't know Abedin personally, "from everything I do know of her, she has a sterling character, and I think accusations like this being thrown around are pretty dangerous."

On Wednesday another prominent Republican, Sen. John McCain of Arizona, also came to the defense of Abedin, who is Muslim.

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