July 30, 2014

Waters Calls for Immediate Trial in Her Ethics Case

Rep. Maxine Waters called Monday for the ethics committee to immediately conduct a trial on whether she violated House rules, criticizing the panel for canceling the hearing set for Monday.

The Committee on Standards of Official Conduct announced earlier this month that it would indefinitely postpone the California Democrat’s ethics trial, citing a need to review new evidence in the case.

Standing outside the Longworth House Office Building hearing room where her trial would have taken place Monday, Waters said: “My message to the committee is simple: Schedule my hearing before the end of the session or tell me, my constituents and the American public the real reason for this delay.”

“There is no legal, rules-based or commonsense reason to delay this hearing any longer,” she added.

An ethics investigative subcommittee charged Waters in August with violating the chamber’s rules, alleging that her chief of staff, Mikael Moore, tried to secure federal support for a bank in which Waters and her husband held hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of stock. Waters has disputed allegations of wrongdoing by her office.

Waters said that she spoke with ethics Chairwoman Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.) before Thanksgiving, but that the chairwoman told her only that she was “under pressure.”

“I don’t know what that means,” Waters said. She said she had not spoken with ranking member Jo Bonner (R-Ala.) and does not have any other meetings scheduled with committee members.

An ethics committee spokesman could not immediately be reached for comment.

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