Washington, D.C. – Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi released the following statement after the House Republican Conference voted to include the Goodlatte amendment in the House Republicans Rules package which effectively destroys the independent Office of Congressional Ethics, preventing it from reviewing anonymous complaints and moving it under the control of the Committee on Ethics:
“Republicans claim they want to ‘drain the swamp,’ but the night before the new Congress gets sworn in, the House GOP has eliminated the only independent ethics oversight of their actions. Evidently, ethics are the first casualty of the new Republican Congress.
“The Office of Congressional Ethics is essential to an effective ethics process in the House, providing a vital element of transparency and accountability to the ethics process. The amendment Republicans approved tonight would functionally destroy this office.
“Congress must hold itself to the highest standards of conduct. Instead, the House Republicans Conference has acted to weaken ethics and silence would-be whistleblowers.”