(FreedomBeacon.com)- A private watchdog group is urging the House Ethics Committee to investigate whether Oregon Democrat Congressman Kurt Schrader violated House rules prohibiting the use of taxpayer-funded resources for campaigns or political purposes.
The Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust (FACT) filed a complaint with the Ethics committee last Friday alleging that at least two of Schrader’s recent campaign ads use official press releases from his congressional office.
House rules prohibit the use of official resources (AKA taxpayer-funded resources) for campaign or political purposes. Such official resources include a lawmaker’s official press releases, websites, or social media accounts.
In its complaint, FACT reiterated to the ethics committee that the rule is in place to protect taxpayer-funded resources from abuse and theft.
A recent campaign video called “Veterinarian,” shows Schrader talking with a man on a sidewalk while an accompanying copy from one of the congressman’s official press releases appears on the screen. The video then shifts to Schrader talking to a woman in a hard hat while a copy from another official press release appears on the screen. Throughout the ad, Schrader’s reelection campaign logo remains prominent.
The FACT complaint also accuses Schrader of failing to disclose stock transactions in a timely manner as required by the 2012 STOCK Act. This is an all-too-common occurrence among House members.
In 2012, Congress passed the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act which requires all lawmakers to disclose any stock purchases or sales within 45 days. The purpose of the act was to prevent lawmakers from profiting off of insider information.
Shrader, a veterinarian, is in his seventh term in Congress and is being challenged in the primary by progressive Democrat Jamie McLeod-Skinner.
Because he has been one of the few Democrat lawmakers willing to push back against House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, four of the five local county Democrat parties in Oregon’s District 5 voted to endorse McLeod-Skinner over Schrader.
His progressive opponent also has the support of left-wing activists and labor unions, including SEIU. She has been endorsed by the Working Families Party and the Progressive Democrats of America.