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Investigation into Potential Misuse of Campaign Funds by Rep. Cori Bush


The Justice Department has initiated an investigation into whether Democratic Representative Cori Bush of Missouri misused campaign funds for her own personal security, according to a statement issued by the progressive lawmaker on Tuesday.

Denying any wrongdoing, Bush asserted that she is fully cooperating with federal prosecutors in the matter. As a rank-and-file member of Congress, she emphasized that she is not entitled to personal protection by the House. Instead, she has used campaign funds, which are permissible, to retain security services. It’s important to note that no federal tax dollars have been utilized for her personal security services.

The statement from Bush followed the subpoena of the House Sergeant of Arms office by the Justice Department for documents pertaining to this case. No comments have been made by the Justice Department regarding this matter at present.

Ever since her election to the House in 2021, Bush, a Black woman with activist roots, has faced relentless right-wing attacks. As a result, she has found it necessary to allocate a significant portion of her financial resources to invest in private security services both at the Capitol and within her district in St. Louis.

Federal Prosecutors Investigate Cori Bush’s Security Expenses

Federal prosecutors are currently investigating the security expenses of Representative Cori Bush. The investigation includes inquiries about the threats she has received and her decision to use campaign funds to pay for her now-husband, Cortney Merritts, as her security detail. These questions mirror those asked by congressional investigators conducting an ethics inquiry into the matter.

The issue of how Bush has been funding her security is also being examined by the Federal Election Commission and the House Committee on Ethics. While the FEC has stated that it is not explicitly against the rules for a member of Congress to use campaign funds for private security, there has been a notable increase in violent threats targeting lawmakers in recent years. In October, the Office of Congressional Ethics unanimously cleared Bush of any wrongdoing in their own investigation.

Bush remains confident that the ongoing investigations will yield similar exoneration. “I look forward to this same outcome from all pending investigations,” she stated on Tuesday.

Security remains a top priority for Bush, who has cited multiple attempts on her life as the reason for her continued need for protection. In an interview with CBS News in August 2021, the former Black Lives Matter activist emphasized the importance of having security to ensure her safety while she carries out her work. “So, if I end up spending $200,000, if I spend … 10 more dollars on it, you know what? I get to be here to do the work,” she firmly asserted.

Investigation into Bush’s Statement: Democratic Leader Declines to Comment

Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries has refrained from making further comments regarding the pending investigation into the recent statement made by Bush. While acknowledging that he hasn’t yet read Bush’s full statement, Jeffries expressed his anticipation for future communication on the matter with reporters.

The news about the investigation into Bush was initially reported by Punchbowl News.

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