The House Ethics Committee announced Tuesday that it is investigating four members, including Rep. Jim Hagedorn, a Republican representing southern Minnesota.
According to CQ-Roll Call, the cases were investigated by the nonpartisan Office of Congressional Ethics, which concluded that in each case there was a substantial reason to believe that a violation had occurred. The OCE is a fact-finding office and, unlike the Ethics Committee, cannot discipline members or issue subpoenas.
The Minnesota Reformer, an online news site, previously reported on questionable spending by Hagedorn’s office.
“Congressman Hagedorn personally self-reported this matter to the Ethics Committee last year and will continue working with it to bring it to an appropriate conclusion,” Elliot Berke, managing partner of the law firm Berke Farah,said in a statement on behalf of Hagedorn. “The fact that the OCE, which provides non-binding recommendations to the Ethics Committee, decided to investigate something that was already under review was a waste of taxpayer funds and House resources.”
Hagedorn won a second term last November to represent the 1st District, which stretches across the state’s southern border.
Hagedorn is battling Stage IV kidney cancer, and announced in July that he’d had a recurrence.
He is married to Jennifer Carnahan, the former leader of the Minnesota Republican Party.
Recent news of criminal charges against a Minnesota GOP donor and operative accused of child sex trafficking increased calls for Carnahan to resign from her post, which she did after initially resisting.
The other House members facing House Ethics Committee investigations are Democrat Tom Malinowski of New Jersey and Republicans Mike Kelly of Pennsylvania and Alex X. Mooney of West Virginia.
The House Ethics Committee will make a further announcement on the matters, which all hinge on either official spending or personal financial dealings, no later than Oct. 21.