Congressional Ethics

Common Cause is a vocal advocate for high ethical standards in Washington. In the 1980s, we partnered with a young Republican congressman, Newt Gingrich, to spotlight the ethical abuses that led to the resignation of House Speaker Jim Wright. In the '90s, we sparked a House Ethics Committee investigation of that same Rep. Gingrich, by then Speaker of the House himself. And in the early 2000s, we were among the first organizations to call for the resignation of House Majority Leader Tom DeLay over repeated ethics violations.

Common Cause's lobbying in 2007 led the House to create the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE), the first independent ethics watchdog in Congress; since then, we have faced down bi-partisan attempts to weaken or dismantle the OCE and are lobbying the Senate to create a similar ethics oversight panel. Our lobbying figured prominently in the passage of the Honest Leadership and Open Government Act, placing new disclosure requirements on lobbyists, and the STOCK Act, clarifying that Congress is bound by laws barring government officials from using "inside" information to enrich themselves.

Latest Status

Two top Republican lawmakers profited from a corporate tax-avoidance maneuver that the U.S. Treasury Department is seeking to curb. While U.S. House Speaker John Boehner and Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp have resisted calls for a...

Boehner, Camp Profit From Corporate Bid to Avoid U.S. Tax
Richard Rubin, August 26, 2014

Democracy Wire

Take Action

The Supreme Court gutted a key provision of the Voting Rights Act.

Tell Congress to fix the court’s bad decision!

Take action.

Donate

Give Today

Join the Community

Find Common Cause Activists in your area.

Add Me to the Map