Watchdog Group Catches Top Democrat Leaders In Violation Of Key Rule

( Three Democrat members of the House have apparently violated Federal law and House ethics rules by failing to provide a “full and complete” accounting of assets, debts, and income in the time required. So says the non-partisan ethics watchdog group the Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust (FACT).

FACT sent letters to the Office of Congressional Ethics calling for an ethics investigation into Congresswomen Lori Trahan (D-MA), Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) and Kathy Castor (D-FL).

Every member is required by law to file statements of the Representative’s (and family member’s) assets, debts, and income, as well as filing periodic reports if any transaction made exceeds $1,000. These statements must be submitted within thirty to forty-five days of the transaction.

Violation of the financial reporting requirement is a breach of both House ethics rules and federal law.

According to FACT Executive Director Kendra Arnold, this isn’t one of the rules that is hard for a member to follow.

In a statement released last week, Arnold said that the Office of Congressional Ethics must investigate these violations immediately and, if the members are found in violation, impose the property sanctions – including fines and penalties.

FACT alleges that all three Congresswomen “failed to report the purchase or selling of stocks within the required time frame.” While they did finally report the transactions, it was long after the required deadline.

Congresswoman Trahan sold up to $15,000 in stock for the software company Stella Connect. While the transaction took place on September 10, 2020, Trahan didn’t disclose the sale until July 27, 2021.

Congresswoman Wasserman Schultz, and her dependent child, purchased up to $15,000 and up to $45,000 respectively, in Westell Technologies in October 2020. Neither Wasserman Schultz nor her child’s purchases were disclosed until July 2021.

How can a child who can afford a $45,000 stock purchase be considered a “dependent child?” Or did Wasserman Schultz make the purchase in her child’s name?

Congresswoman Castor acquired up to $45,000 worth of Berkshire Hathaway stock in June and July of 2020 which she did not disclose until July 27, 2021.

These reporting rules are not new. Every member of Congress knows about them. As far as FACT is concerned, there is no excuse for these House members to file late.