Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo along with his wife is said to have broken federal ethics regulations according to The State Department since they often asked their staff to perform work that was not official along with personal errands such as shopping, making reservations in restaurants, and take care of their dog.
Friday saw the release of a report which showcases that the State Dept’s inspector general believes that these requests were “inconsistent” as per rules. Pompeo however is not a federal official anymore and cannot be subjected to federal measures or disciplinary actions. Hence no action shall be taken against Mike Pompeo who left his office on 20th January after the Trump administration had ended.
Mike and his lawyer have denied all the accusations in the report which showcases that Pompeo and his wife, Susan “made over 100 requests to employees in the office of the secretary to conduct work that appeared to be personal in nature.” The Former Secretary’s attorney notes that the report only showcases a few requests that are questionable and even they do not violate any regulations.
The report showcases personal tasks as “picking up personal items, planning events unrelated to the department’s mission, and conducting such personal business as pet care and mailing personal Christmas cards.” Most of these orders were given to an assistant who has been working for the Pompeos for a long time and was employed by the State Department as the secretary’s senior adviser.
The report says that they have found proof that Mrs. Pompeo had “on several occasions” asked advisers to plan group events for people that the Pompeos had nongovernmental relationships. The investigators seem to have identified at least 30 requests made by Susan or Mike Pompeo to their staff to make reservations in restaurants for personal dinners and lunches.
The report said that the general “found that such requests were inconsistent with department ethics rules and the Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the Executive Branch.”
The report said, “Rather, the standards prohibit any use of a subordinate’s time to perform personal activities unless compensation is paid.” The inspector general has noted that no exception in the ethics rule was made for minimal personal favors.
Mike’s attorney William Burck responded to the report that it was not fit for publication and was biased. Mike had earlier fired the former chief in the inspector general’s office which was an action that was criticized by many. Most people believe Pompeo fired the former chief to stop embarrassing investigations which would look into his time at the department.
The lawyer said, “The poor quality of the report bespeaks not merely unprofessionalism in its drafting but also bias, which we are concerned may be politically motivated.” He alleged that the report was “not fit for publication” and wanted proof that the Pompeos had ordered over 100 inappropriate requests from their staff as claimed by the investigators.
The State Department has not shared any judgment based on the report but has accepted all recommendations. The State Department responded to the report by saying, “The department appreciates the work of the Office of Inspector General, and, as the report notes, concurs with all the recommendations and will proceed to implement them.”