Justice Department Probes Rep. Cori Bush's Campaign Expenses Amid Campaign Payments to Husband

 April 19, 2024

Rep. Cori Bush, a Democratic Congresswoman from Missouri, faces skepticism and legal scrutiny regarding her campaign finances.

Rep. Cori Bush has been under scrutiny due to her campaign's financial dealings, which involved payments to her husband, Cortney Merritts, for security purposes.

Fox News reported that since the onset of 2022, the Democratic representative has directed a sizeable sum from her campaign coffers to Merritts, totaling $135,000. These transactions included consistent bi-monthly payments of $2,500 from January to March 2024.

Despite the substantial funds directed towards security services, Merritts is reportedly not listed in the D.C. database of licensed security professionals. Furthermore, there's no evidence of his private security license, raising questions about his qualifications for the role he's been paid for.

Extensive Security Expenditures and Legal Concerns

In addition to payments to Merritts, Bush's campaign has disclosed expenditures of over $770,000 on additional security services from providers based in St. Louis.

As these financial activities come to light, they have attracted the attention of the Justice Department. Several watchdog groups are scrutinizing the legitimacy and appropriateness of these payments.

The House Ethics Committee, however, has dismissed one complaint against Bush while leaving another unresolved from the previous year. Despite the financial inquiries, Bush maintained her political activities, advocating for higher salaries for federal workers during a protest in December 2023.

Rising Political Challenges Amid Financial Scrutiny

Bush's opponent, Wesley Bell, seems to hold a significant advantage in the upcoming primary election for Missouri's 1st Congressional District.

Leading in both finances and polls, Bell's campaign appears robust compared to Bush's, which reported $528,622 in cash as of late March 2024. The primary election, scheduled for August 6, 2024, is fast approaching amidst this controversy.

In defense of her actions, Rep. Cori Bush articulated her position and the rationale behind the contentious financial decisions. The representative underscored her lack of eligibility for personal protection provided by the House, leading her to use campaign funds for security measures.

Bush stated:

As a rank-and-file member of Congress I am not entitled to personal protection by the House, and instead have used campaign funds as permissible to retain security services In accordance with all applicable laws and House rules, I retained my husband as part of my security team to provide security services because he has extensive experience in this area, and is able to provide the necessary services at or below a fair market rate.

When initially questioned by a videographer regarding his role, Merritts denied involvement but later confirmed his continued participation in Bush's campaign security. He stated, "I'm still in the campaign; I still do security with the campaign. Have a good night, man. Be safe."

This evolving situation leaves several questions unanswered concerning the ethics and legality surrounding using campaign funds for security services, especially when payments are made to a family member. As the legal evaluations continue, the stakes are high not only for Bush's political future but also for the integrity of campaign finance management in congressional races.

About Victor Winston

Victor is a freelance writer and researcher who focuses on national politics, geopolitics, and economics.

Top Articles



Receive information on new articles posted, important topics and tips.
Join Now
We won't send you spam. 
Unsubscribe at any time.

Recent Articles

Recent Analysis

Copyright © 2024 - CapitalismInstitute.org
A Project of Connell Media.