Washington, D.C. – Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-San Jose) today voted in favor H.Res. 895, which would establish the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE), an independent office within the House tasked with reviewing members and their offices. The OCE will be composed of 6 Board members, jointly appointed by the Speaker and Minority Leader. Current Members of the House, federal employees, and lobbyists are not eligible. The panel will review ethics complaints under a two step process, and refer those it believes have merit to the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct (Ethics Committee) for further action.
“This bill sets a new standard for ethics in the House,” noted Rep. Zoe Lofgren. “What we have here is one of the most sweeping pieces of ethics reform that Congress has ever voted on. The creation of the OCE will substantially increase transparency and accountability in the people’s House.”
The bill establishing the COE is supported by several noted groups and individuals, including: Common Cause; U.S. PIRG; Norm Ornstein of the American Enterprise Institute; and, Tom Mann of the Brookings Institution.
Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren is serving her seventh term in Congress representing most of the City of San Jose and Santa Clara County. She serves as Chair of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration, Citizenship, Refugees, Border Security, and International Law. She also Chairs the House Administration Subcommittee on Elections and serves on the House Homeland Security Committee. Congresswoman Lofgren is Chair of the California Democratic Congressional Delegation consisting of 34 Democratic members of the U.S. House of Representatives from California.