Senate Dems tell Mulvaney to turn over calendar after comments about lobbyists
A group of Democratic senators is asking White House budget chief Mick Mulvaney to release details of his scheduling habits following comments he made about meeting with lobbyists while he was a member of Congress.
The letter, signed by the top Democrat on the Senate Banking Committee and 21 other lawmakers in the upper chamber, asks for details about Mulvaney’s scheduling rules as the director of the Office of Management and Budget and the acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).
“Selling access to a Congressional office is unconscionable. Nowhere does the Constitution state that Americans should have to buy their constitutional right to petition the government. This policy, formal or informal, is anti-democratic, unethical; and if it’s not illegal, it should be,” the senators wrote.
The lawmakers ask that Mulvaney give the related documents to Democrats on the Senate Banking Committee by May 18.
“The policy you followed in your Congressional office reserved access for special interests with deep pockets. If this practice carried over into your executive branch work, you may have further damaged faith in our democracy,” the lawmakers wrote, referring to the comments Mulvaney made about meeting with lobbyists when he was a member of Congress.
“If you were a lobbyist who never gave us money, I didn’t talk to you. If you were a lobbyist who gave us money, I might talk to you,” Mulvaney said of his time in Congress at a conference last month hosted by the American Bankers Association. “If you came from back home and sat in my lobby, I would talk to you without exception, regardless of the financial contributions.”
Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), the ranking member of the Senate Banking Committee, said last month that Mulvaney should resign from both of his administration positions following the budget chief’s comments.
In addition to Brown, Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) and Cory Booker (D-N.J.) signed the letter to Mulvaney.
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