It’s panic time for one of the most prominent Democrats in Washington, D.C.
Federal authorities appear to be closing in.
A top Democrat just found out they were under criminal investigation for one shocking reason.
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez ally Missouri Congresswoman Cori Bush is the subject of a federal investigation into alleged misuse of campaign funds for personal use.
Punchbowl broke the news that the Justice Department subpoenaed the House Sergeant at Arms for documents about an investigation into a member of Congress misusing campaign funds.
According to its website, the House Sergeant at Arms “reviews and implements all issues relating to the safety and security of Members of Congress and the Capitol complex.”
Bush’s campaign paid former security guard and Bush’s now-husband Cortney Merritts more than $100,000 since bringing his firm onboard in January 2022.
The Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust (FACT) filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) in March 2023 accusing Bush of violating laws against using donations for a candidate’s personal benefit.
“In her own FEC filings the payments were initially characterized as being for ‘security.’ Among the many troubling facts involved that we strongly felt justified an investigation were her close personal relationship, her large payments to others for the same services at the same time, and that her husband reportedly didn’t have a license to provide those services,” a statement from FACT executive director Kendra Arnold about the complaint read.
Arnold accused Bush of self-dealing by paying her husband’s firm a rate above the fair market value any other vendor would have charged.
“It appears Rep. Bush’s campaign may have made payments for services that were unnecessary or above fair market value because of her personal relationship with the payee,” Arnold added. “If so, these payments would qualify as either impermissible payments to a family member or an impermissible gift.”
Bush’s response to the investigation only worsened her problems as she admitted she hired her husband to provide security for her campaign, which is an issue as Merritts isn’t licensed as a security guard in Missouri.
“[I] can confirm that the Department of Justice is reviewing my campaign’s spending on security services. We are fully cooperating in this investigation, and I would like to take this opportunity to outline the facts and the truth,” Bush stated.
“Since before I was sworn into office, I have endured relentless threats to my physical safety and life. As a rank-and-file member of Congress I am not entitled to personal protection by the House, and instead have used campaign funds as permissible to retain security services. I have not used any federal tax dollars for personal security services. Any reporting that I have used federal funds for personal security is simply false,” Bush concluded.
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