Dems call for investigation into lawmakers who sleep at the Capitol
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Dozens of House Democrats are calling for an ethics investigation into the habit many lawmakers seem to have of sleeping in their congressional office, something that critics say is improper and unsanitary.

In a December letter signed by 30 members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) obtained by Politico, the Democrats called for a probe into whether the "problematic" practice violated federal law.

"Members who sleep overnight in their offices receive free lodging, free cable, free security, free cleaning services, and utilizie other utilities free of charge in direct violation of the ethics rules which prohibit official resources from being used for personal purposes," the members wrote in a letter to House Ethics Committee Chairwoman Susan BrooksSusan Wiant BrooksWomen poised to take charge in Dem majority Hillicon Valley: Officials pressed on Russian interference at security forum | FCC accuses Sinclair of deception | Microsoft reveals Russia tried to hack three 2018 candidates | Trump backs Google in fight with EU | Comcast gives up on Fox bid Press shuts out lawmakers to win congressional softball game MORE (R-Ind.) and ranking member Ted DeutchTheodore (Ted) Eliot DeutchHouse panels set up to probe indicted GOP Reps. Collins, Hunter Ivanka Trump on mass shooting: 'Our hearts are with Jacksonville' Top Ethics Dem calls for Nielsen to resign MORE (D-Fla.) 

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The Ethics Committee has yet to respond to the letter, signed by CBC Chairman Cedric RichmondCedric Levon RichmondState Department: Allegations of racism 'disgusting and false' Congressional Black Caucus says Kavanaugh would weaken Voting Rights Act protections Democrats move to limit role of superdelegates in presidential nominations MORE (D-La.) and other top Democrats, even though it requested a response by Jan. 5. CBC members are reportedly preparing to send another letter, making it the third official call for action on the issue.

The Democrats recommend in the letter that if the Ethics Committee allows lawmakers to sleep in their offices that the members be taxed "at the fair market value of a Capitol Hill apartment" to disincentivize the practice.

Some members said they took issue with a number Republicans regularly sleeping in their congressional offices, living for free in a government building, while advocating cuts to welfare programs.

The Washington, D.C., metropolitan area has one of the most expensive housing markets in the country.