Ethics Committee Extends Inquiry Into Williams
Williams had come under fire for endorsing Cruz in a House email

Texas Rep. Roger Williams has come under criticism for an amendment he sponsored. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The House Ethics Committee announced it would extend its look into a matter regarding Texas Republican Rep. Roger Williams.  

"The committee notes that the mere fact of a referral or an extension, and the mandatory disclosure of such an extension and the name of the subject of the matter, does not itself indicate that any violation has occurred, or reflect any judgment on behalf of the committee," the press release stated.  

The committee did not describe the nature of the inquiry, but Williams' communication director Vince Zito said it related to an amendment the congressman sponsored in November that would allow auto dealers to rent or loan out vehicles that are under recall. The congressman owns Roger Williams Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram in Weatherford, Texas.  

Zito said Williams had offered the amendment because of his knowledge of the industry.  

"Longstanding House precedents have not found that members are required to abstain themselves from legislation that affects a large class of individuals and businesses," Zito said.   

He added that Williams' dealership is a "negligible part" of a larger class of automobile dealers.  

"And we are confident that the Ethics committee will reaffirm its precedents when they review the facts in more detail," Zito said.  

The committee has until Aug. 11 to announce a course of action.

Contact Garcia at  EricGarcia@cqrollcall.com  and follow him on Twitter  @EricMGarcia .

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