Yeah. I made that up - but only the last part. Read on.
The American Democracy Legal Fund has filed a complaint with the U.S. House of Representatives Office of Congressional Ethics against twenty-three Members, including Representatives Stephen Knight, Barbara Comstock, Rodney Davis, Jeff Denham, Dan Benishek, Tim Walberg, Martha McSally, David Valadao, Mike Coffman, Carlos Curbelo, David Young, Bob Dold, Mike Bost, Bruce Poliquin, Frank Guinta, Cresent Hardy, Lee Zeldin, John Katko, Will Hurd, Ryan Costello, Elise Stefanik, Daniel Donovan and Mike Bishop for violating 31 U.S.C. § 1301 and House ethics rules prohibiting official resources from being used for campaign or political purposes.
These Members violated these rules by entering into the "Patriot Program Contract 2015," a contract with the National Republican Congressional Committee agreeing to provide details of the Members’ legislative strategy, including a "detailed finance plan and budget," in exchange for "special attention" and "campaign cash." The intent of the contract is for Members to use the official resources available to them to coordinate and detail their legislative strategies and plans with the NRCC.
"It is no surprise that the American people have lost faith in the Republicans who recklessly run Congress," said Mary Jennings, spokesperson for the American Democracy Legal Fund. "As if the disarray in Republican ranks isn’t bad enough, now vulnerable Republican House Members are literally selling their legislative agendas to a political committee for campaign cash. Members of Congress are supposed to craft a legislative agenda that benefits their constituents, not auction their vote off to the highest bidder. Frankly, the fact that these 23 House Members don’t get that shows they are not fit to serve. We urge the Office of Congressional Ethics to investigate this behavior and take swift and decisive actions against any member who treats the public trust like a commodity to be bought and sold."
h/t Matt Heinz campaign press release