Following the resignation of Chairman David Skaggs from the board of the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE), Issue One Executive Director Meredith McGehee released the following statement:
“When the U.S. House of Representatives established the OCE in 2008, its purpose was to restore public confidence in a congressional ethics process that was in shambles. There was a desperate need for a change in direction and to make real reforms that would enhance Congress’ ability to police itself by adding an independent voice to hold members accountable. It was unfortunate that the Senate decided not to follow suit.
“In his years as chairman, former Rep. David Skaggs took what could have easily devolved into a partisan food fight and brought integrity to the process. The OCE was never intended to be popular within the halls of Congress, but Skaggs brought tremendous public credibility to the office and demonstrated a remarkable ability to find common ground across partisan lines. Under his leadership, almost every action taken by the OCE has been with unanimous bipartisan support, solidifying its reputation as a truly independent body.
“Incoming chairman Mike Barnes, who represented Maryland’s 8th District in Congress for eight years and is a member of Issue One’s ReFormers Caucus, is highly respected and known for his thoughtfulness and dedication to substantive work. We are hopeful that he will continue the approach that Skaggs started by upholding the integrity of the House to restore the public’s faith in our elected officials.
“Issue One thanks David Skaggs for his years of service, and looks forward to the OCE continuing to act as a steadfastly unbiased and nonpartisan voice.”