Rep. David Schweikert will have to pay a $50,000 fine for breaking campaign finance rules, The Hill reports.
The Republican lawmaker from Arizona agreed to pay the fine recommended by the House Ethics Committee on Thursday.
The bipartisan ethics panel found that Schweikert violated 11 different rules and standards including campaign finance violations, pressuring staff into working on his campaign and misusing officials resources for his reelection.
The ethics committee also ripped him for showing a “lack of candor and due diligence” during the two-year investigation.
He agreed to admit to all 11 counts of misconduct, accept a formal sanction and pay the fine, according to a joint statement from House Ethics Committee Chairman Ted Deutch, D-Fla., and the panel's ranking Republican, Rep. Kenny Marchant, Texas.
Deutch and Marchant said that the committee will bring a resolution for a vote by the full House to formally reprimand Schweikert.
A Schweikert spokesperson said that the lawmaker is looking to "move forward" from the ethics investigation.
"We are pleased the committee has issued their report and we can move forward from this chapter. As noted in the review, all issues have been resolved and Congressman Schweikert will continue working hard for Arizona’s 6th District," a Schweikert spokesperson said.
The Ethics Committee’s report states that between 2010 and 2017, Schweikert's campaign committees erroneously disclosed or failed to report at least $305,000 in loans or loan repayments; did not report at least $25,000 in campaign spending; did not report more than $140,000 in campaign contributions; and falsely reported making payments totaling $100,000.
The report found that Schweikert's former chief of staff improperly made purchases over $270,000 that were reimbursed by the campaign between 2011 and 2018.
"Representative Schweikert knew or should have known that [his chief of staff] made substantial purchases on behalf of his campaign, but did not prevent the practice," the report stated.
In addition, the report found that at least four of the lawmaker’s congressional aides were reimbursed by the campaign for personal items like food and babysitting services.
Another violation involved Schweikert's campaign falsely reporting that he had loaned the campaign $100,000 and then reporting that the amount had been spent, "which served to adjust the campaign’s reported cash on hand that was propped up by the fictitious loan.”
The report also states that he “made vague or misleading statements" to the Ethics Committee and Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE), an independent entity responsible for investigating allegations of lawmaker misconduct.
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