Voters have a right to know who their elected officials are and what or who may influence them. That is why CLC filed a complaint against Representative Andy Ogles of Tennessee with the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE).
Rep. Ogles’ financial disclosure reports appear to include over $1 million in financial discrepancies, including his failure to report assets he purportedly used to personally loan his campaign committee $320,000 and a $700,000 line of credit.
Federal law requires all candidates and members of Congress to file accurate financial disclosure reports and makes it unlawful for anyone to falsify information knowingly and willfully such as the total liabilities owed to a creditor and assets that exceed $1,000, including bank accounts that are interest-bearing.
It is important that the public know an elected official’s financial obligations because that informs them of any potential conflicts of interest that may arise.
Rep. Ogles included a different line of credit on his financial disclosure reports but excluded the one for $700,000, suggesting that he was aware of the requirement to report liabilities, but intentionally omitted it.
Beyond this, Rep. Ogles has allegedly made multiple inaccurate statements about his background, including misrepresentations of his career and education that demonstrate a patten of Rep. Ogles providing inaccurate information to the public.
These kinds of misrepresentations deprive Rep. Ogles’ constituents of the truth regarding his prior career before becoming their congressman and as a result may lead to a decrease in public trust. By also failing to accurately report his assets and what loans he has taken out, Rep. Ogles is raising fundamental questions for voters about the transparency of their elected representative.
For these reasons, it is imperative that OCE investigate whether Rep. Ogles violated federal law by failing to properly disclose his financial interests.