U.S. House Considers Changes to Law That Protects Identity of Politicians Accused of Sexual Misconduct

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Several new attempts are being made to reform a controversial law that prevents the public from knowing the identities of politicians accused of sexual misconduct.

At least two new efforts are being launched to reform a law that shields the identities of politicians accused of workplace sexual harassment and forces the American taxpayer to foot the bill. The attempts at reforming the Congressional Accountability Act are part of a broader effort to combat allegations of rampant sexual assault and harassment among the elite of Hollywood and Washington D.C.

On Thursday the House Administration Committee held a hearing to explore the Congressional Accountability Act and how they might make the process of reporting sexual misconduct more transparent and responsive.

The Washington Examiner reports that House Administration Committee Chairman Gregg Harper “intends to move legislation through the panel by late January that would reform the 1995 Congressional Accountability Act, which governs the way the Legislative Branch handles workplace claims, including sexual harassment.”

“My goal is that we would have all this resolved and have a markup at the end of January,” Harper told the Washington Examiner.

Chairman Harper and the House Ethics Committee are investigating past settlements conducted as part of the Congressional Accountability Act to determine whether lawmakers violated House rules or U.S. law. However, the Office of Compliance, which oversees the claims, denied the Committee access to the information.

“The OOC believes they are barred by law to give it, but if you change the law they’d be happy to give it to Ethics,” Harper told the Examiner. “So that is one of the things we should look at changing.”

The program created under the Congressional Accountability Act had not received much public attention until Representative Jackie Speier revealed to MSNBC that in the last ten years alone the U.S. House of Representatives has spent $15 million in taxpayer funds to settle sexual misconduct lawsuits. Speier, a Democrat from California, disclosed the amount during a recent interview on Meet the Press Daily with MSNBC’s Chuck Todd.

“We really need to reform the entire Office of Compliance process,” Speier said. “Right now it takes about 90 days for you to file a complaint, and before actually going through the mediation, you have to sign a non-disclosure agreement and then you are not represented by counsel, but the harasser is represented by the House of Representatives general counsel.”

Speier has since introduced her own bill to fight against workplace misconduct in D.C. Speier’s bill – known as the Member and Employee Training and Oversight on Congress Act, or the Me Too Congress Act – would address the lack of transparency surrounding the process for reporting sexual harassment or abuse.

At Thursday’s hearing Representative Speier announced the legislation now has 110 co-sponsors. Speier noted that the avenue for reporting abuse should be changed. “I think we need to recognize that the House Ethics Committee or House Administration Committee is not the venue to which investigations should be sent when a complaint is filed of sexual harassment,” she stated.

If Speier’s claims are accurate and the American taxpayer has paid more than $15 million in ten years to cover up the sexual abuse and harassment at the hands of politicians, this issue should not be taken lightly. An unknown amount of men and women have been harassed or assaulted and made to be silent via taxpayer-funded payoffs.

All the while the abusers are allowed to go free and continue to maintain a position of power. This helps contribute to a predatory culture where those in positions of power or influence are able to escape accountability for their crimes. We must put an end to this by holding everyone responsible for their actions. Whether they are celebrity actors or popular politicians, all people should be held to the same standard.

Derrick Broze is an investigative journalist and liberty activist. He is the Lead Investigative Reporter forActivistPost.com and the founder of the TheConsciousResistance.com. Follow him on Twitter. Derrick is the author of three books: The Conscious Resistance: Reflections on Anarchy and Spirituality and Finding Freedom in an Age of Confusion, Vol. 1 and Finding Freedom in an Age of Confusion, Vol. 2

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Contributed by Derrick Broze of www.activistpost.com.

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  • Phil_Ossifer

    Cockroaches, congressmen and other vermin hate it when they have a bright light shined on them.

  • SP_88

    This is outrageous. If any of us are guilty of sexual assault or even taking a leak behind a dumpster, we have to register as a sex offender, and a red dot appears over our house.
    Meanwhile, these crooked politicians are groping and raping and sexually assaulting women and children, and they want to remain anonymous? And they expect to avoid being held accountable by using taxpayer dollars to pay off their victims? This is crazy. In what universe is this acceptable?
    This problem will not be solved until these crooked politicians get the same punishment for their crimes as we would get. Jail time and a lifetime membership to the sex offender registry is a good start.

  • idontknow

    Yeah, congress is going to change those laws right after the FBI investigates themselves for RICO crimes…

  • elbustaroyjetspeekerson

    “This helps contribute to a predatory culture where those in positions of power or influence are able to escape accountability for their crimes.”

    “….Helps contribute to a predo cult…..” REALLY?!??!?!?!?!? This statement DEFINES IT. I’m TELLIN’ ya, It’s motherfreaking TIME: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fGj2Un8lldA

  • elbustaroyjetspeekerson

    Oh yeah, they considered it, alright….for exactly .000000000001 nanoseconds…….but hey, it still sounds good, specially if ya say it reeeaaaaalllll ssslllllooowwwww………….

  • Codygunn

    The taxpayers must have those names! Let’s get them on the table.

  • KreepyJoe

    Does Netanyahu touch children or just murder them?

  • Guillotine_ready

    If they’re going to pass a law to hide the identity of predators then it is best we assume they are all predators and act accordingly

  • AmericaAwakens

    I think we may find a way to keep the (so-called) elites in order with our own laws! Congressional servants to our country citizens is no better protected than WE ARE…They are not anyone special; besides, they should have an honest & moral attitude to represents US!

    If the Coutfound by a Judge ‘guilty’… he or she must remove them self from Congress immediately. If not gone one after the final decision (if guilty) give him/her time in prison to think how poorly they performed and the black-eyed person gets no retirement and loses all “perks” currently enjoyed immediately. Further penalties should keep these guilty from lobbyists jobs for at least 10 yrs before allowing them to start their rotten dealing that citizens do not have any way, we have been stuck with all sorts of higher costs to us as we are aware how you get paid “on the cuff”.