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Ethics watchdog files complaint over Amash Tweet


A government ethics watchdog says it has filed a complaint with the Office of Congressional Ethics against congressman Justin Amash and White House Director of Social Media Dan Scavino over a twitter feud.

It all started with a Tweet—On April 1, Scavino tweeted that Amash was “a liability,” then called for #TrumpTrain--and this is the sticking point for him--for the Trump Train to defeat Amash in the primary. To which Amash replied tweeting “Bring it on. I’ll always stand up for liberty, the Constitution & Americans of every background.” But, in the last line of the tweet he typed “you can help here:” and added a link to his contribution page.

“There’s pretty strict rules in place that you’re not allowed to use anything official to benefit your campaign or raise money for it.”

That’s Jordan Libowitz from Citizens for Responsibility and ethics in Washington also known as CREW, they posted a statement on Tuesday April 4 saying they had filed complaints with the Office of Congressional Ethics, also known as the OCE, and the Office of Special Council.

A spokesperson for Rep. Amash said “House rules govern the use of congressional resources, and @justinamash is Rep. Amash’s personal account. It does not use any office or taxpayer resources, nor can his staff access the account.”

Libowitz however doesn’t buy that argument.

Credit WGVU
Tweet from White House Director of Social Media, Dan Scavino, calling for political action against Rep. Justin Amash

“@justinamash account often talks about legislation and identifies him as a member of congress, so it is clearly being used for official business.”

If that is the case, then Amash would be in violation of House Ethics rules for social media. But for now the complaints with the OCE and it will lead to a review process that can take nearly three months. Their investigation will go to the Standards Committee, which is it’s own lengthy process. 

Mariano Avila is WGVU's inclusion reporter. He has made a career of bringing voices from the margins to those who need to hear them. Over the course of his career, Mariano has written for major papers in English and Spanish, published in magazines, worked in broadcast, and produced short films, commercials, and nonprofit campaigns. He also briefly served at a foreign consulate, organized for international human rights efforts and has done considerable work connecting marginalized people to religious, educational, and nonprofit institutions through the power of story.
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