Ted Lieu requests ethics investigation into White House violation of federal ethics law
WASHINGTON, D.C. (February 9, 2017) — U.S. Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Los Angeles County) sent a letter to the Director of the Office of Government Ethics requesting an ethics investigation into the actions of White House senior staff, Kellyanne Conway.
On Thursday Conway publicly endorsed the Ivanka Trump fashion line, a clear violation of federal ethics law. Having served on active duty as a Judge Advocate General officer in the U.S. Air Force, Mr. Lieu worked extensively on cases specific to ethics issues of civilian and military personnel, including this very section of the Code of Federal Regulations governing federal government ethics.
“In an appearance this morning on Fox News program “Fox & Friends,” Ms. Conway made the following remarks regarding the Ivanka Trump fashion line: “Go buy Ivanka’s stuff, is what I would tell you. It’s a wonderful line. I own some of it. I fully — I’m going to just, I’m going to give a free commercial here: Go buy it today, everybody. You can find it online.”
“Ms. Conway’s comments are a clear violation of the letter and spirit of the law. Given President Trump’s apparent view that federal ethics rules do not apply to his office, I respectfully request the Office of Government Ethics to investigate this incident. Pursuant to Title 5, Section § 2638.503 of the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations, I urge you to immediately notify the White House of the violation of government ethics law to prompt corrective action.”
According to Title 5, Section § 2638. 501 of the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations, if the White House does not address this matter in a timely fashion after receiving a notice, “the OGE Director may use the procedures of Section § 2638.504 to issue a nonbinding recommendation of a disciplinary action or an order to terminate an ongoing violation. Nothing in this subpart relieves an agency of its primary responsibility to ensure compliance with government ethics laws and regulations.”
THE FULL TEXT OF THE LETTER CAN BE FOUND HERE
Lieu is a member of the House Foreign Affairs and House Judiciary Committees. He is also an Assistant Whip for the Democratic Caucus and a Colonel in the Air Force Reserves.