Rep. Jean Schmidt being investigated by Ethics Board

Rep. Jean Schmidt, Source: Capitol Hill Newspaper 'Roll Call'
Rep. Jean Schmidt, Source: Capitol Hill Newspaper 'Roll Call'

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - The Office of Congressional Ethics is investigating Rep. Jean Schmidt's receipt of legal assistance from a Turkish-American interest group that has represented her in a host of proceedings in Ohio.

According to the Capitol Hill Newspaper Roll Call, Schmidt's attorney Bruce Fein declined to answer questions about how he is paid, saying he is responding to a request from the OCE, the board that reviews potential rules violations and recommends investigations to the House Ethics Committee.

According to the House Ethics Manual, a Member may accept pro bono legal services under certain circumstances, such as the filing of friend-of-the-court briefs or civil actions challenging the validity of a federal law or regulation.

Members are also allowed to establish legal defense funds, with the permission of the Ethics Committee, for cases related to the Member's official duties, as well as criminal prosecutions or "a civil matter bearing on the individual's reputation or fitness for office," the manual states.

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