House Speaker Jim Wright, D-Texas, predicts colleagues on a congressional ethics committee will vindicate him now that they have heard his side of allegations about personal business and financial affairs.

Wright spent about five hours behind closed doors with the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct Wednesday, answering questions from members and from the panel's special counsel."I'm very, very happy about this," he told reporters as the meeting broke for lunch. "I've looked forward to this day for more than three months."

The committee is investigating Republican allegations of misconduct involving Wright's financial affairs and his dealings with other government officials on behalf of friends and associates.