Republicans in the House of Representatives had voted to strip the independent ethics committee, but their vote was changed quickly after President-elect Donald Trump tweeted about what a horrible decision it was. Apparently, the Republicans wanted to gut the ethics committee in a way that would undermine Trump’s vow of “draining the swamp” in Washington D.C.
Here is what Trump posted on his Twitter page: “With all that Congress has to work on, do they really have to make the weakening of the Independent Ethics Watchdog, as unfair as it is.” It seemed strange that Trump wanted to save the ethics committee, even though he called it unfair. This could be a sign to his supporters that he’s trying to keep his promise to them.
Speaker of the House Paul Ryan defended the Republican proposal to gut the independent ethics committee just shortly after Trump posted his tweets about opposing the idea. Ryan stated that many members in the House of Representatives think the Office of Congressional Ethics has to be reformed so that due process can be protected and operational. Ryan went on to say that the House is still going to make sure its members uphold the highest level of ethical standards possible.
The whole controversy here is that if the House members were to gut the ethics committee, then it would no longer be able to investigate them for any wrongdoing on their part. And since Republicans are about to take over two branches of the federal government, there wouldn’t really be any watchdog to stop them from doing something unethical. That is why Donald Trump was so adamant about keeping it because he didn’t want “crooked” establishment politicians to have their way anymore.
There is no word yet as to whether the Republicans will change their mind again, but so far it looks like Trump is scoring big points with his supporters. However, this does put him at odds with Paul Ryan and other House Republicans. This certainly isn’t a good start in their relationship with just weeks before Trump’s inauguration.