U.S. House: Back Door Attempt to Scuttle Office of Congressional Ethics Condemned by Reform Groups


Today reform groups urged every Member of the House of Representatives to vote down an amendment to the Congressional budget bill that would slash the budget for the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE) by 40 percent ($619,000).  In a letter the groups praised the work of the OCE and condemned the attempt by Rep. Mel Watt (D-NC) to defund it.


The organizations include the Campaign Legal Center, Common Cause, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, Democracy 21, the League of Women Voters, Public Citizen, and U.S. PIRG.

The full letter follows below.


July 21, 2011

Our organizations strongly urge you to oppose an amendment by Representative Mel Watt that would gut the Office of Congressional Ethics by reducing the funding for OCE by $619,000 or 40 percent.

The recent dysfunctional performance by the House Ethics Committee has only served to reinforce the critically important role being played by the OCE in the House ethics enforcement process.

The OCE, under bipartisan leadership, has done an outstanding job in carrying out its mission to help protect the integrity of the House. There is absolutely no basis for reducing OCE’s funding.

We strongly urge you to vote no on the Watt amendment.

Campaign Legal Center

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington

Common Cause

Democracy 21

League of Women Voters

Public Citizen