Hoyer Statement on Republicans' Comments Regarding House Ethics Committee Investigations

For Immediate Release:

May 19, 2006

Contact:Stacey Farnen Bernards
(202) 225 - 3130

WASHINGTON, DC - House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today in response to House Republicans' attempt to blame Democrats for the House Ethics Committee's delay in investigating allegations of unethical behavior by Members.

"Anyone familiar with the history of the House Ethics Committee must find House Republicans' attempt to blame Democrats for a delay in launching investigations into allegations against Members completely ludicrous.  I personally have repeatedly said for years that the Committee has a duty to initiate investigations into credible allegations of misconduct and have urged them to do so.

"The facts speak for themselves - the Republicans fired the Chairman and two Members of the Committee, purged the professional staff and unilaterally tried to weaken the rules.  In fact, the Committee has only been fully staffed for the past two months.

"To the degree the Ethics Committee is now carrying out its proper role - which I welcome - it is because the political reality is that the Republicans can no longer ignore it."

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