“House Ethics Amends Private Travel Rules”

Roll Call:

The House Ethics Committee announced on Thursday that it has adopted new regulations for accepting privately financed congressional travel, including heightened disclosure requirements and earlier approval deadlines.

The changes were the result of a working group convened by the committee in the 111th and 112th Congresses and “provide a greater level of clarity into the requirements and conditions for receiving the committee’s approval to accept privately sponsored travel,” according to a joint statement from Ethics Chairman Jo Bonner, R-Ala., and ranking member Linda T. Sanchez, D-Calif.

As Roll Call has reported extensively in the past, numerous groups linked so closely to lobbying interests they are all but indistinguishable are increasingly funding congressional travel in order to promote their agendas. The activity comes less than five years after Congress placed heightened restrictions on lobbyist-funded travel in the wake of the Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal.

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