March 23, 2012
Washington, D.C. – Today, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) released its new report, Family Affair, detailing how members of the House of Representatives use their positions to financially benefit their families. In the case of Rep. Rob Andrews (D-NJ), when he wasn’t busy violating campaign finance laws, he was earmarking more than $1.5 million to his wife’s employer and donating thousands of dollars in campaign funds to theaters where his daughter performs. While Rep. Andrews’ behavior is egregious, he is not alone. In all, CREW found a shocking 248 House members used their positions to financially benefit themselves or family members.
“A federal campaign account is not a personal piggy bank,” said CREW Executive Director Melanie Sloan. “It seems clear Rep. Andrews has been using the generosity of his donors to finance his lifestyle. It is time for the Federal Election Commission to conduct a full audit of his campaign spending and hold Rep. Andrews accountable for any violations.”
Over the 2008 and 2010 election cycles, Rep. Andrews earmarked more than $1.5 million to the Rutgers University School of Law, where his wife works as the Associate Dean of Enrollment and Projects. During the 2008 election cycle, the campaign also made a $5,000 “outreach contribution” to the Rock School of Dance, where his daughter, Josie Andrews, trains. Additionally, his campaign gave tens of thousands of dollars to theaters where she regularly performs. Recent reports have highlighted campaign funded trips to California coinciding with dates that Ms. Andrews, an aspiring pop star, had recording sessions in Los Angeles.
CREW is partnering with LegiStorm to make the data in this report more widely available in a searchable form at LegiStorm.com.
Family Affair is a follow-up to CREW’s 2007 Family Affair – House report, which looked at how representatives used their positions to benefit family members over the 2002, 2004, and 2006 election cycles. The new report focuses on the 2008 and 2010 cycles. Click to read the 2007 reportor the 2008 Family Affair – Senate report.