Tags: blake farenthold | hired | lawyers | investigate | sexual harassment claims

Report: Blake Farenthold's Office Hired Lawyers to Probe Harassment Claims

Report: Blake Farenthold's Office Hired Lawyers to Probe Harassment Claims
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By    |   Friday, 08 December 2017 04:34 PM

Rep. Blake Farenthold's office confirmed Friday that it had hired private lawyers to investigate complaints from two staffers about inappropriate workplace conduct in 2016.

Stacey Daniels, a spokeswoman for the four-term Texas Republican, told Politico that his office hired an "independent investigative team" to review claims by two Farenthold staffers.

Daniels declined to specify who conducted the inquiry.

One claim was from a female aide, who mentioned to the congressman that his chief of staff, Bob Haueter, treated female staff in the office "differently," Daniels told Politico.

In the second, another employee subsequently said that the first complainant engaged "in inappropriate sexualized commentary in the workplace," she said.

Haueter did not respond to a request for comment from Politico.

Farenthold, 55, has been under attack for using $84,000 in taxpayer money from the congressional Office of Compliance to settle a sexual harassment claim lodged by his former communications director, Lauren Greene, in 2014.

He denied wrongdoing. The Office of Professional Ethics cleared him in 2014.

The House Ethics Committee, however, said Thursday that it was probing Farenthold over the incident.

The congressman said Monday that he would repay the $84,000.

According to Politico, Farenthold aides were interviewed by members from the law firm in a conference room in the Longworth Office Building.

They were queried about whether the work environment in the office amounted to sexual harassment, a person familiar with the situation told Politico.

However, the probe brought forth no evidence of gender bias or inappropriate sexual comments, Daniels said.

Farenthold and his staff "took sensitivity and anti-harassment training to insure full compliance with office policy and the law," she said.

Daniels also would not detail the nature of the harassment training, Politico reports.

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Rep. Blake Farenthold's office confirmed Friday that it had hired private lawyers to investigate complaints from two staffers about inappropriate workplace conduct in 2016.
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Friday, 08 December 2017 04:34 PM
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