The House Ethics Committee announced Friday that it is launching a probe into whether Rep. Laura Richardson (D-Calif., photo) required congressional aides to work on her 2010 reelection campaign on the government’s clock while using House resources. The ethics panel had voted unanimously Thursday to establish a special subcommittee to investigate the Congresswoman, who was already investigated last year by the panel for receiving preferential treatment from a bank on her foreclosed home in Sacramento.
The Los Angeles Times reported:
A source familiar with the preliminary inquiry discussed it on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue. At least eight current and former Richardson staff members told investigators they felt compelled to work on her ... reelection campaign on their own time, the source said. Some said House resources, such as congressional phones and copying machines, were used in the campaign, the source said.
Politico obtained a letter of resignation earlier this year by Richardson’s former district scheduler, Maria Angel Macias, who was previously interviewed under oath by ethics investigators. "On more than one occasion I was asked to do a task or coordinate an event that was on the ethical borderline and not in my job description," Macias wrote in the resignation letter. "I cannot work in a toxic and hostile environment like this, which is why I resign today."
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