The House Ethics Committee is fining Madison Cawthorn (R-NC) $15,000 for encouraging others to buy cryptocurrency. What the representative neglected to tell them was that he had a “financial interest” in the product he was promoting. Cawthorn completely omitted his crypto holdings and transactions.
The committee finished its report over a month after Cawthorn packed up and left Washington, D.C. The representative lost his attempt to return to Congress in the Republicans’ primary, according to CNBC.
The House Ethics Committee said Cawthorn had been “admonished” and fined, because he violated the “conflict of interest rules.” At the same time:
‘The Ethics Committee also said an investigative subcommittee’s report did not find evidence Cawthorn engaged in an improper romantic or sexual relationship with a staffer, with whom he had been seen in videos “engaging in explicit and sexually suggestive comments and conduct.”‘
The Ethics Committee said its subcommittee’s report found that Cawthorn’s failure to file those disclosures was not done “knowingly or willfully,” but instead was based on incorrect advice from an accountant about the disclosure requirements:
‘Based on the totality of his conduct, including his repeated and knowing promotion of a cryptocurrency in which he held a financial interest, the Committee also determined that Representative Cawthorn acted in a manner that did not reflect creditably upon the House, in violation of clause 1 of the House Code of Official Conduct.’
The representative finally disclosed that he had ownership in Ethereum’s Let’s Go Brandon cryptocurrency after the House investigation into his actions had begun. Indeed, the representative took a photo with the coins co-founders.
Cawthorn stretched and broke the 45-day disclosure law:
‘[The law referred to] sales of stocks, bonds, commodity futures and other securities within 45 days of when they took place.’
The panel also discovered the representative spent $150,000 to buy 180 billion of the Let’s Go Brandon coins and wrote:
‘[The purchase] was on more generous terms than were available to the general public, resulting in an improper gift.’
After Cawthorn bought his coins, its value increased 75 percent with NASCAR driver Brandon Brown sponsoring the cryptocurrency. Then NASCAR quashed the sponsorship, and the value of the coin bottomed out.
The panel told Cawthorn to pay back $14,237.49 to a “charitable organization” by year’s end, The Washington Post reported and:
‘Remit late fees of $1,000 to the Treasury Department and submit a transaction report disclosing his Jan. 17 sale of some of his LGB coin holdings.’
‘The House Ethics Committee has directed Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-NC) to pay more than $15,000 in fines and fees for encouraging people to purchase a cryptocurrency in which he had a financial interest that was not properly disclosed.’
In regard to the subcommittee’s inquiry into the relationship between Cawthorn and his staffer, its report read “both denied having any romantic or sexual relationship:”
‘All witnesses interviewed by the [subcomittee] also stated there was no improper relationship between the two, and that the close relationship between Representative Cawthorn and this individual did not create an unfair work environment.’
Cawthorn was stopped multiple times for driving with a revoked driver’s license. In addition, he faced a misdemeanor charge for taking a loaded gun to an airport.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) came down hard on the North Carolina representative. It seemed Cawthorn blasted the airways with alleged news:
‘[Other representatives] invited him to orgies and done cocaine in front of him.’
The subcommittee discovered pictures prior to Cawthorn becoming a member of the House. Meaning that it was not within the panel’s control.
Featured image is a screenshot via YouTube.
Christie writes Gloria Christie Reports & Three White Lions Substack newsletters and a Three White Lions podcast available on Apple, Spotify, etc. She is a political journalist for the liberal online newspaper The Bipartisan Report. Written in her own unique style with a twist of humor. Christie’s Mueller Report Adventures In Bite-Sizes a real-life compelling spy mystery (in progress). Find her here on Facebook. Or at Three White Lions her book on Amazon Kindle Vella and the Gloria Christie Three White Lions podcast on Apple, Spotify, etc.