Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-Ga.), who is on the ballot for a January 5 election, is facing two ethics complaints and a request for a Justice Department investigation after she solicited donations for her campaign during an interview from the U.S. Capitol building. The ethics complaints are from the Democratic Party of Georgia and the American Democracy Legal Fund, both of whom filed their complaints with the Senate Ethics Committee — which, like the rest of the Senate, is controlled by Republicans at present and could thereby be inclined to ignore the complaints. The Georgia Democratic Party also requested an investigation from the Justice Department.
The Georgia Democratic Party’s executive director Scott Hogan said that “Senator Kelly Loeffler has once again chosen to use her position of power for personal and political advantage by illegally asking for donations on national television while on federal property,” and the American Democracy Legal Fund’s president, Brad Woodhouse, agreed. He said that the “fundraising solicitation from the Capitol was illegal, plain and simple.” Rules presently “prohibit members of Congress from soliciting contributions in federal buildings,” The Atlanta Journal-Constitution says — which is exactly what Loeffler did.
During the interview in question, Loeffler told Fox News that “we know that hundreds of millions of dark, liberal money is pouring into our state,” adding: “That’s why it’s so important that everyone across the country get involved. They can visit KellyforSenate.com to chip in $5 or $10 bucks to get involved, volunteer.” Notably enough, this occasion is not the first time that a Republican U.S. Senator who’s been up for re-election has asked for money while on Fox News. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), who recently won re-election and currently serves as the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, repeatedly pleaded for donations during Fox News appearances prior to his own election. Democrat Jaime Harrison, who was challenging Graham, raised huge sums of money.
Stephen Lawson, a spokesperson for Loeffler, derided the complaints and request for a Justice Department investigation. According to the Journal-Constitution, he said as follows:
‘We’re only two weeks into this race and the Democrats are already so desperate to try to distract from Raphael Warnock’s attacks on the police, military, small businesses, Israel and virtually every other voting bloc that they’re spending their time filing frivolous complaints.’
Warnock is Loeffler’s Democratic challenger. The two of them appeared alongside one another on the ballot on November 3, but according to Georgia rules, a U.S. Senate candidate must win higher than 50 percent of the vote in order to secure the seat they’re running for. If no candidate passes that mark, then the top two candidates proceed to a one-on-one match in a run-off election. Georgia’s other U.S. Senate seat also went to a run-off after the recent election, when incumbent Republican David Perdue failed to pass 50 percent in his race against Democrat Jon Ossoff.
If Democrats win both seats, then the Democratic Party will control the U.S. Senate, because the chamber would be 50-50, but vice presidents are tasked with breaking ties. With Biden in the White House, the tiebreaker would be Kamala Harris.