The top Democrat on the House Oversight Committee, Rep. Elijah Cummings (Md.), called for an ethics review of White House counselor Kellyanne Conway promoting Ivanka Trump’s clothing line.
In a Thursday letter to Oversight Committee Chairman Jason ChaffetzJason ChaffetzCongress's latest hacking investigation should model its most recent Fox News Audio expands stable of podcasts by adding five new shows The myth of the conservative bestseller MORE (R-Utah), Cummings requested the panel make a referral about Conway to the Office of Government Ethics to determine whether she violated ethics laws barring federal employees from using their public offices to endorse products.
An aide to Cummings later said that he and Chaffetz are working on a joint referral.
Conway encouraged viewers to buy the first daughter's products during an interview with “Fox & Friends” Thursday morning.
"Go buy Ivanka's stuff, is what I would tell you." Conway said during an appearance from the White House briefing room. "I'm going to give it a free commercial here, go buy it today.”
Cummings cited government ethics laws that explicitly prohibit federal employees from using their office to endorse products or for the private gain of associates.
“This appears to be a textbook violation of government ethics laws and regulations enacted to prevent the abuse of an employee’s government position,” Cummings wrote.
A Chaffetz spokeswoman didn’t immediately respond to an email seeking comment.
A left-leaning watchdog group also asked the federal government to investigate into Conway’s comments.
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) called the remarks “an apparent violation of federal law, ethics regulations and other standards of conduct” in a letter to the Office of Government Ethics and White House counsel Donald McGahn.
CREW’s executive director, Noah Bookbinder, urged them to “take any necessarily disciplinary action.”
Conway's comments came a day after President Trump attacked Nordstrom on Twitter for dropping his daughter’s clothing line. Nordstrom has maintained the decision was made because the line wasn’t selling well.
"My daughter Ivanka has been treated so unfairly by @Nordstrom. She is a great person — always pushing me to do the right thing! Terrible!" Trump tweeted on Wednesday.
Jordan Fabian contributed.