House Ethics Committee Continuing to Review Tlaib

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Posted: Oct 01, 2019 7:30 AM
House Ethics Committee Continuing to Review Tlaib

Source: AP Photo/Paul Sancya

The House Ethics Committee is continuing to review Rep. Rashida Tlaib for taking a salary from her 2018 campaign prior to taking office. 

House Ethics Committee Chairman Ted Deutch (D-Fla.) and the panel's ranking member, Rep. Kenny Marchant (R-Texas) said the review does not mean any wrongdoing has occurred.

“The Committee notes that the mere fact of a referral or an extension, and the mandatory disclosure of such an extension and the name of the subject of the matter, does not itself indicate that any violation has occurred, or reflect any judgment on behalf of the Committee,” they said in a joint statement. 

The Office of Congressional Ethics originally referred the matter on Aug. 16. The Ethics Committee's next course of action will be announced by Nov. 14, the statement said. 

The Federal Election Commission (FEC) allows nonincumbent candidates to pay themselves a salary from their campaign committees if they meet certain criteria. The campaign salary is designed to help first-time candidates who aren't independently wealthy. […]

Conservative outlets in March highlighted FEC records showing that Tlaib's campaign paid out $17,500 in salary disbursements after the Nov. 6, 2018, general election. One payment of $2,000 was dated Nov. 16, while another of $15,500 was dated Dec. 1.

The FEC rules for allowing a candidate to receive a campaign salary state that the payments can be made until the date of the general election or until the candidate is no longer running.

The rules also state that the salary cannot exceed the minimum annual salary for the federal office sought by the candidate or what the candidate received as income in the previous year.

An FEC spokesperson did tell The Washington Free Beacon in March that a candidate can pay themselves after the general election date for an activity that happened up to that date. (The Hill)

Tlaib's office has been cooperative and maintains that she "fully complied with the law and acted in good faith at all times.”