California’s Rep. Laura D. Richardson was named one of the most corrupt people of the year. In a report released by Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), the group named 19 members of Congress-14 members whose actions violated the law or who otherwise engaged in serious misconduct, and five others whose lack of regard for the rules earned them a dishonorable mention. Richardson came out at No. 8.
Richardson has been accused of misusing official resources for campaign activity and personal benefit. But this isn’t the first time the politician has been included in a CREW report. She was also listed in 2008 and 2009.
In an interview published in March 2011, Maria Angel Macias, Rep. Richardson’s former district scheduler, alleged that Rep. Richardson had required members of her staff to volunteer time on her 2010 re-election campaign.
She said the representative often scheduled campaign events “while on the taxpayer’s dime” and even made staff members work at her campaign events outside office hours. Other staff reported that they were forced to work campaigns or face termination.
In her resignation letter, Ms. Macias added that “on more than one occasion [she] was asked to do a task or coordinate an event that was on the ethical borderline and not in [her] job description.”
Staffers also reported that the congresswoman even asked them to routinely run errands for her.
Other alleged offences included intimidation for political contribution, solicitation on federal property, improper use of appropriated funds and false statements to Congress.