Office of Congressional Ethics

Crisis Averted but Future Is Still Unclear for House Watchdog
Republicans promise bipartisan review of Office of Congressional Ethics

Massachusetts Rep. Michael Capuano, who chaired the committee that recommended the creation of the Office of Congressional Ethics, says he would welcome looking at potential revisions to the office. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

House Republicans might have ditched a plan to gut the Office of Congressional Ethics. But the future of Congress’ only outside ethics review board is far from guaranteed.

The Office of Congressional Ethics, or OCE, has been under fire from both parties since it was created eight years ago. Now the House GOP majority is promising to revisit a potential overhaul before the end of this session, possibly as early as August.

Report: Hunter Used Campaign Funds to Fly Family Rabbit
Comes after son used campaign credit card for playing video games

Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., used $600 in campaign money to fly a family rabbit, an ongoing review of his expenses revealed.

Amid Blowback, Republicans Strip Ethics Office Change From House Rules
Progressive groups join with some conservatives to oppose overhaul of OCE

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., conducts a news conference after a meeting of the House Republican Conference in the Capitol, September 21, 2016. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

By Rema Rahman and Simone Pathé

House Republicans on Tuesday quickly reversed their position on a provision in a House Rules package that would have significantly changed how the independent Office of Congressional Ethics investigates members of Congress. 

Ethics Committee Rebukes Rep. Ed Whitfield
Kentucky congressman allowed lobbyist wife to contact staff

Kentucky Rep. Edward Whitfield said his failure to prevent contact between his lobbyist wife and his staff was "unintentional." (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The House Ethics Committee  has concluded unanimously that Kentucky Republican Rep. Edward Whitfield "failed to prohibit lobbying contacts between his staff and his wife."  

"The committee found that Rep. Whitfield failed to take the proper care to avoid violations of the applicable rules,” according to a report released Thursday .  

Congressman Takes Aim at Ethics Agency
Pearce attempts to defund agency that reviewed former employee

New Mexico Republican Rep. Steve Pearce is one against going after the Office of Congressional Ethics. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A New Mexico Republican may have failed to defund a congressional ethics agency that once investigated one of his own employees – but he did succeed calling for a debate over cutting a nearly $200,000 budget request increase instead.  

Rep. Steve Pearce introduced two amendments to the Legislative Branch spending plan contentiously debated on the House floor on Thursday. It was among a flurry of changes lawmakers attempted to attach to a typically overlooked appropriations bill that controls the House's spending on the House.