US House Republicans vote to limit body that probes ethics violations

Republican lawmakers in the US House of Representatives have voted to weaken an independent ethics office that investigates allegations of misconduct by legislators in the lower chamber of Congress.

Under the change, the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE), an independent and nonpartisan entity, would come under the control of the House of Representatives Ethics Committee.

In place of the OCE, Republicans would create a new Office of Congressional Complaint Review that would report to the House Ethics Committee, which has been accused of ignoring credible allegations of wrongdoing by lawmakers.

Representative Robert W. Goodlatte, a Republican from Virginia who crafted the OCE rules, announced on Monday that the House Republican Conference had approved the change.

The OCE was created under the leadership of Representative Nancy Pelosi, a Democrat from California and former House speaker.

Pelosi, who is currently the House minority leader, joined others…

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