Retreat: House GOP reverses plan to gut independent ethics panel

President-elect Donald Trump speaks during a thank you rally in Mobile, Alabama. (Photo by Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images)

President-elect Donald Trump speaks during a thank you rally in Mobile, Alabama. (Photo by Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images)

Facing a storm of criticism – and a rebuke from President-elect Donald Trump – House Republicans signaled Tuesday they would retreat from their plan to gut an independent ethics panel created in 2008 after several corruption scandals sent members to prison:

From The New York Times:

It was an embarrassing turnabout on the first day of business for the new Congress, a day when party leaders were hoping for a show of force to reverse policies of the Obama administration.

The reversal came less than 24 hours after House Republicans, meeting in a secret session, voted, over the objections of Speaker Paul D. Ryan, to eliminate the independent ethics office, created in 2009 in the aftermath of a series of scandals involving House lawmakers, including three that were sent to jail.

The reversal on the Office of Congressional Ethics came shortly after Trump signaled he didn’t approve of the GOP plan:

The office was created in the wake of the Jack Abramoff era. He was the uber-lobbyist whose efforts to protect Indian casinos (at outrageous costs) from gambling competitors enveloped several House staff members and Bush administration officials – and scuttled Ralph Reed’s 2006 bid for lieutenant governor in Georgia.

More: House Republicans aim to end Jack Abramoff era

 

Reader Comments 0

22 comments
Bob Miller
Bob Miller

Amazing what happens when Trump ends a tweet with #DTS.

James Campbell
James Campbell

Yep, Trump hasn't even been sworn in yet, but has had more of a positive impact on our nation than the sitting prez.

Greg P Bates
Greg P Bates

I am totally opposed to a Trump presidency. But he did the right thing in this case. Good job!

Becky Fly
Becky Fly

He just said they shouldn't have made it a priority. He didn't say he was against what they did. He called the ethics committee "unfair".

Greg P Bates
Greg P Bates

Becky Fly oh, I see. Typical Trump Speak. Say two mutually conflicting things so you get the most media attention. YAWN. I rescind my tacit endorsement of Trump. ☺

tinala
tinala

The Republikkklans are up to their old tricks and shenanigan,again, being corrupt without any repercussions for their wrong doings. Glad it was reversed.

Daniel Eason
Daniel Eason

The Office of Congressional Ethics is nonpartisan. The House committee on ethics is run by the party in power. In 2008, the GOP House leadership saw creating an independent office as either a way of maintaining House control, by passing popular legislation, or removing review of ethics charges from the control of a Democrat-controlled House in 2009. Things have changed. They no longer fear the Democrats gaining control, and they no longer see ethics reform as popular among constituents who just voted for the likes of Trump. None of that speaks well of House Republicans. It screams that they want to carry on unethical practices. They've backed down, for the moment, but they have already signaled that they will take it up again, later. You Republicans ought to decide whether you favor ethics in Washington ("drain the swamp") or not. Everything about this says not.

Keith Taylor
Keith Taylor

It will go away quietly in the night.....never had it before 2008 and the World still turned. You want to fight ethics......go after a real issue......H.C.

Georgia Blue
Georgia Blue

The flood of phone calls and emails they had waiting for them at dawn was a factor. We need to hold our representatives accountable for every action. If we don't, they quickly forget that they work for us, not the other way around.

Tillie Vilsaint
Tillie Vilsaint

Hey! Is Purdue the frontrunner for Agriculture Secretary or CA former Lt Governor Abel Maldonado?

Daniel Eason
Daniel Eason

Where are all the Georgia Republicans who can defend the attempt to rid Washington of ethics oversight?

Brenda Bender
Brenda Bender

They are hiding because they are not big on ethics themselves

Michael Wynn
Michael Wynn

I think that when they saw Trump and the deplorables weren't on board with the move, they changed course.

Daniel Eason
Daniel Eason

They didn't realize that there are still more people who demand ethics in government than there are deplorables.

Daniel Eason
Daniel Eason

The House Republicans were attempting (and will again) to put that scrutiny into the hands of the House committee on ethics, which is controlled by the Republicans.

Susan Coppola Gill
Susan Coppola Gill

Actually, it's the opposite; there are no democrat ethics; their Chairpersons proved that twice in 2016 (well, more often, but giving benefit of the doubt---something no liberal does.) We deplorables want the liberals to be under the same scrutiny Republicans have been for years, and hopefully with the same results.

Daniel Eason
Daniel Eason

Susan, the Office of Congressional Ethics reviews the ethics charges made against any and all members of the House. They investigate both Republicans and Democrats. Both parties are under the same scrutiny.