Tallahassee Democrat/Gannett: Common Cause files complaint against Matt Gaetz, Collier Merrill about full disclosure
Pensacola New Journal: Common Cause files complaint against Matt Gaetz, Collier Merrill about full disclosure
PENSACOLA — Common Cause, a group that touts its dedication to upholding the core values of American democracy, has lodged complaints against U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz and Pensacola businessman Collier Merrill.
Nearly identical complaints were filed Wednesday with the U.S. Department of Justice, the U.S. House Committee on House Administration and the Office of Congressional Ethics.
Each calls for an investigation into whether Gaetz, R-Fort Walton Beach, and Merrill broke the law by failing to fully disclose their personal relationship prior to entering into a rental agreement. …
The complaint, citing Politico’s reporting, alleges Gaetz has been renting the office space for below market value. House rules require that members rent at market value. …
The Common Cause complaint notes that the criminal code “prohibits anyone in any matter within the jurisdiction of the legislative branch of the federal government from knowingly and willfully:
“Falsifying, concealing, or covering up a material fact; making any materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statement or representation or making or using any false writing or document knowing the same to contain any materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statement or entry.”
Violations of the criminal code specifically include “the procurement of property or services … or a document required by law, rule, or regulation to be submitted to the Congress or any office or officer within the legislative branch,” the complaint said.