Posted 2 years ago on Feb. 25, 2012, 4:34 p.m. EST by GirlFriday
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Tax filings by the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) for 2008 and 2009 show cash payments to Cantor and 21 state elected officials who were honored by the group.
While rules spelled out in the House Ethics Manual bar members from receiving cash payments from outside groups, records maintained by ALEC indicate it gave Cantor $1,350 in 2009 in connection with his receipt of ALEC's annual "Thomas Jefferson Freedom Award."
In a letter sent to Cantor, R-Va., today, Common Cause asked the GOP leader to explain his apparent receipt of the ALEC payment and his failure to reveal it on the annual disclosure statement he and other lawmakers file with the House clerk. By copy of that letter, Common Cause also called the payment to the attention of the Office of Congressional Ethics. Here is a video of Cantor accepting the award.
"It appears Mr. Cantor and a substantial number of state legislators have accepted cash rewards for their work advancing ALEC's pro-business legislative agenda," said Bob Edgar, president and CEO of Common Cause. "And while most of these payments total only a few hundred dollars, a public official's acceptance of any payment other than his or her government salary raises serious ethical – and perhaps legal – questions and, at a minimum, needs to be fully disclosed."