Rep. Alan Grayson (D., Fla.), known as one of the most outspoken members of Congress, met with a congressional ethics investigator Wednesday and would not discuss the meeting when questioned by Politico.
Grayson has come under fire in recent months by the media and watchdog groups for operating hedge funds bearing his name, actions that are prohibited by sitting members of Congress.
Additionally, on the same day the Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust (FACT) filed an ethics complaint against Grayson, he made a $15,000 payment to a law firm using funds from his campaign, which he also refuses to discuss. A lawyer from the firm attended the meeting alongside Grayson.
Grayson, a U.S. Senate candidate, didn’t deny the meeting with the Office of Congressional Ethics investigator the day before but instead argued about whether he could talk about it.
"As I understand the rules, we're not allowed to discuss anything to do with the OCE at all," Grayson told Politico when repeatedly pressed on the issue.
Contrary to Grayson’s claims, there does not appear to be any prohibition against him discussing his case, ethics lawyers said.
The self-described "congressman with guts" also refused to comment about why his Senate campaign last quarter paid about $15,000 for "legal services" to Akerman Senterfitt. A lawyer from the firm represented Grayson in his Wednesday meeting with the ethics investigator.
Akerman received the first of its four payments from Grayson’s campaign on July 6, the day a conservative watchdog group called Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust announced it was filing an OCE complaint in response to a June 30 Politico report that raised questions about whether Grayson broke House ethics rules by putting his name in the titles of three hedge funds. They were overseen by a management company that also bore his name.