Liberal group hits Issa with ethics complaint, Issa pushes back

Matthew Boyle Investigative Reporter
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A liberal advocacy group filed an ethics complaint against House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa on Tuesday and is asking the Office of Congressional Ethics to conduct an investigation.

Citing an error-ridden report about Issa published by The New York Times, as well as several articles appearing on the Center for American Progress’s “ThinkProgress” website, American Family Voices President Mike Lux alleges that it’s possible that Issa mixed his congressional duties with his private financial interests.

The New York Times issued several corrections to its article after Issa released documentation proving that parts of it were inaccurate.

Lux told The Daily Caller that AFV decided to do some of its own research because “the press is sometimes inaccurate.” Even so, the complaint quotes The Times’ article and ThinkProgress as its primary sources, adding only a few other citations: the House Ethics policy, a CNN story about Issa’s net worth based on his financial disclosure forms and a document already cited by The Times.

“There’s a lot of murky questions here about what exactly was in the Goldman Sachs fund, how much did these property improvements that he pushed for help him personally,” Lux said. “There’s just a lot of questions here and we just felt there were too many unanswered questions.”

Lux said his group looked at Issa’s “version of the documentation” but “felt like it left a whole lot of unanswered questions.”

Lux said he thinks there’s a “possibility” that the documents Issa provided were falsified. “I also think it’s a possibility that those documents had no direct bearing on some of the issues here,” he said. “For example, he released documents showing how the road improvements in his district benefitted other citizens.”

Lux worked for President Obama’s White House transition team in 2008. He admitted to TheDC that he still has some contact with current White House officials and offers policy advice for the president on occasion. (RELATED: Issa: Only way Holder didn’t know about Fast and Furious is ‘if he made sure he didn’t want to know’)

“The complaint is entirely without merit,” Issa spokesman Frederick Hill said in an email to TheDC. “This is clearly an effort being driven by the White House and its allies.”

Lux denied the charges, saying that he hasn’t talked to anyone in the White House, or on Obama’s re-election campaign, about Issa.

The White House did not respond to TheDC’s request for comment.

The Office of Congressional Ethics declined to comment for this story, as it does not comment on any possible, pending or current investigations.

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