Holding Federal Officials Accountable.
Government officials sacrificing the best interest of their constituents for personal gain or profit is nothing new. CfA investigates corruption throughout the federal government, whether it occurs in Congress or federal agencies. CfA exposes those who have betrayed the public trust by abusing their power to advance their own ends.
As a part of this work, CfA has investigated numerous members of Congress and congressional officials. Most recently, in May 2017, we filed a complaint with the Office of Congressional Ethics against Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ) after he targeted the political activities of a Lakeland Bank employee in New Jersey. In January 2017, we filed a complaint against House staffers who potentially broke federal laws and House rules by surreptitiously working on President Donald Trump’s controversial immigration order. In 2015 and 2016, we filed complaints against United States Senator Bob Corker alleging he concealed information about his stake in several Tennessee hedge funds managed by his campaign donors. Subsequently, the FBI and SEC opened investigations into Sen. Corker.
CfA has also pressed for accountability in the executive branch. In 2016, CfA called on the Department of Defense’s Inspector General to investigate Defense Secretary Ashton Carter for the misuse of his private email account. In September 2016, we called on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to improve its ethics enforcement program after our Google Transparency Project revealed that top NHTSA officials were in frequent contact with Google executives while working on federal guidelines for self-driving cars. We’ve also advocated for the release of secretive opinions from the Department of Justice’s Office of Legal Counsel. The opinions are immensely consequential to the federal government’s policy decisions yet are nonetheless kept out of the public eye. When the Department of Justice failed to release the legal opinions, we sued.
Campaign for Accountability investigates corruption throughout the federal government, whether it occurs in Congress or federal agencies.
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CfA has also been an active voice in calling for stronger ethics and transparency in the Trump Administration. During the 2016 Presidential Campaign, we pressed Donald Trump on the veracity of his financial disclosure forms and called on the Department of Justice to investigate. In October 2016, CfA joined a coalition of government ethics groups in calling on the presidential transition teams to adopt strict ethics codes. In December 2016, we joined with Free Speech for People in calling on the Federal Election Commission to investigate whether the Russian government, which paid hackers to aid Donald Trump’s campaign, illegally influenced the presidential election.
Additionally, in February 2017, we filed a motion in the 21st Circuit Court in St. Louis County, Missouri to unseal the divorce records of Andrew Puzder, President Trump’s nominee for Secretary of Labor. Press reports suggested that Puzder’s divorce records contained allegations of domestic abuse, but these records were sealed following Trump’s nomination of Puzder. CfA successfully worked to unseal the divorce records, and Mr. Puzder withdrew himself from consideration shortly thereafter.
Finally, CfA is also working to hold the anti-choice movement accountable. In October 2017, CfA asked the Inspector General at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to investigate whether Office of Refugee Resettlement Director Scott Lloyd broke federal law by abusing his position and government resources to prevent unaccompanied pregnant immigrant minors from having legal abortions and to coerce some into continuing their pregnancies against their will. Additionally, CfA called on the Virginia State Bar to investigate whether Scott Lloyd violated the Virginia State Bar Rules of Professional Conduct for deliberately violating the U.S. Constitution and other federal and state laws to prevent unaccompanied pregnant immigrant minors from obtaining abortions.
CfA continues to advocate for open, ethical, and accountable government at the federal level. Click below to learn more about our latest efforts to hold the federal government accountable.