House Ethics Committee Unanimously Votes To Move Forward Against Paul Broun

Breaking now, but an investigation set off by a report from WSB’s Justin Gray will be moving forward in the U.S. House Ethics Committee.  The questions at hand are whether Congressman Broun used taxpayer funded Congressional Staff for his Senate Campaign activities.  This goes beyond Broun’s history of franking the heck out of his district, and to whether or not the fees paid to campaign consultants who were or became staff members crossed a legal and ethical line.

The findings of the committee, who voted 6-0 to proceed, can be found here.   The cover page is printed after the jump:

The Board of the Office of Congressional Ethics (hereafter “the Board”), by a vote of no less than four members, on July 25, 2014, adopted the following report and ordered it to be transmitted to the Committee on Ethics of the United States House of Representatives.

SUBJECT: Representative Paul Broun

NATURE OF THE ALLEGED VIOLATION: From Jqne 2012 to March 2014, Representative Paul Broun retained O’Donnell & Associates, owned and operated by a communications adviser, to provide communications services to his congressional office. Representative Broun’s office paid O’Donnell & Associates $43,750 for services rendered between June 2012 and March 2014. During the exact same period of time, Communications Adviser provided extensive campaign communications and debate consulting services to Representative Broun’s election campaigns.

If Representative Broun used funds from his Members’ Representational Allowance (“MRA”) for an impermissible purpose-to retain an individual as a consultant to his congressional office-then he may have violated House rules and federal law.

If Representative Broun used MRA funds to pay for services provided to one or more of his election campaigns, then he may have violated House rules and federal law.

RECOMMENDATION: The Board recommends that the Committee on Ethics further review the above allegation concerning use of the MRA to retain a consultant, as there is substantial reason to believe that Representative Broun used MRA funds to retain an individual as a consultant to his congressional office, in violation of House rules and federal law.

The Board recommends that the Committee on Ethics further review the above allegation concerning use of the MRA for campaign-related services, as there is substantial reason to believe that Representative Broun used MRA funds to compensate an individual for services provided to one or more of his election campaigns, in violation of House rules and federal law.

VOTES IN THE AFFIRMATIVE: 6
VOTES IN THE NEGATIVE: 0
ABSTENTIONS: 0

24 comments

  1. Lawton Sack says:

    Taking a look at the House calendar, I do not see any way that they will conclude this before the end of the session. It took almost 4 months to go from the initial complaint to get this far. I tried to go through the Committee’s Rules to try to figure out a timetable, but there are way too many provisions in it.

    If anybody wants to go through the interviews and exhibits, they can be found here.

    I would assume that if it was not completed this session that the case will disappear, since Broun will no longer be in Congress.

    • Dave Bearse says:

      It’s Congress doing something without doing anything. The upside is that it may preoccupy a few lame ducks from doing other damage.

  2. Will Durant says:

    Just a swift kick on the way out with a don’t come back emphasis. Or Broun can look upon it as validation that he is now eligible to run for Governor.

  3. TheEiger says:

    All you consultants out there, please put this in your files for future use. You know Broun is going to run for something again. This vote will make a great mail piece.

  4. drjay says:

    considering this was an almost 20 year quest to became a congressman with races for different districts and offices, i could see him putting himself on the ballot again…

  5. Romegaguy says:

    How is that the Congressional Committee on Ethics can go after someone that was never sworn into Congress?

    #FreeGOPeach

  6. Matt Stout says:

    Because Jim Whitehead would never allow paid Congressional staffers to volunteer on his campaign… Crickets …

Comments are closed.