WASHINGTON, D.C. — The American Conservative Union filed a formal complaint with the United States Senate Ethics Committee Thursday stating that Senator Barack Obama's purchase of property with convicted felon Tony Rezko's wife violated the U.S. Senate's gift ban.
The Complaint notes that in June 2005, just months after Barack Obama took office as a United States Senator, he and the Rezkos acquired pieces of land next to each other on the same day from a single seller. ACU documentation notes that now-convicted felon Tony Rezko toured the Greenwood mansion property and adjacent side yard with Obama before Rezko's wife purchased the attached property on the same day Obama bought the Greenwood mansion.
The Obamas used the side yard as if it were theirs and eventually returned the Rezko's favor by buying back a strip of the side yard for a highly inflated price.
In the letter to the Ethics Committee, ACU Chairman David Keene noted, "sufficient information exists to demonstrate that Senator Obama solicited, received, and accepted a gift greater than $50 from Mr. and Mrs. Rezko, and Senator Obama failed to disclose this gift."
The letter points out that gifts received by Senators which are valued at $250 or more are required to be disclosed on the Senator's personal financial disclosure report, which Senator Obama failed to do. It also notes that knowingly and willingly falsifying or concealing this information may result in a fine of up to $11,000 and make the Senator subject to criminal prosecution.