A top Washington, D.C. legal firm and think-tank announced on Wednesday that it had hand-delivered a biting letter to members of the U.S. Senate regarding the shenanigans and false statements of a New Jersey Democrat elected to the U.S. Senate.
The letter was addressed to the chairman and co-chairman of the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Ethics and calls for a full and non-political investigation into Senator Cory Booker’s, D-New Jersey, who admitted he violated Senate rules by releasing what he believed were classified records onto his Facebook, Twitter and other social media accounts.
According to Tom Fitton, the president of the phenomenal Judicial Watch, Senator Booker faces expulsion from the Senate for his violation of the rules. This isn’t the first time Booker finds himself the target of a government probe. He was also the target of a corruption investigation after several of his Newark, New Jersey Mayor’s top staff were indicted by a federal grand jury. Booker won his Senate seat at the right time so that he was able to avoid an indepth criminal investigation or grand jury indictment.
Sen. Booker confessed that he violated Senate rules when he issued a tweet on Friday, September 7 saying:
“Weds—I broke committee rules by reading from ‘committee confidential’ docs.”
Sen. Booker then posted the following entry on his Facebook account on Sunday, September 9:
“And the classification of many documents as “Committee Confidential” is a sham… I willfully violate these sham rules. I fully accept any consequences that might arise from my actions including expulsion.”
Even more disturbing was Sen. Booker’s uploading Committee Confidential records to a publicly accessible Dropbox account with the heading “Booker Confidential – Kavanaugh Hearing Documents.”
“Senator Booker, in an absurd invocation of ‘Spartacus,’ explicitly invited his expulsion from the Senate in his egregious violation of the rules and contempt for the rule of law and the Constitution,” stated Judicial Watch’s Tom Fitton. “Will the Senate assert the rule of law in the Booker case or allow mob rule to be the new standard?” Fitton asked rhetorically in his letter to the senate leaders.
The Judicial Watch complaint is reprinted below:
Dear Chairman Isakson and Co-Chairman Coons:
Judicial Watch, Inc. is a non-profit, non-partisan educational foundation that promotes transparency, accountability, and integrity in government and fidelity to the rule of law. We regularly monitor congressional ethics issues as part of our anticorruption mission.
Sen. Cory Booker admitted to violating Senate rules when he issued a tweet on Friday, September 7 saying: Weds-I broke committee rules by reading from “committee confidential” docs.
Sen. Booker then posted the following entry on his Facebook account on Saturday, September 8:
And the classification of many documents as “Committee Confidential” is a sham … I willfully violate these sham rules. I fully accept any consequences that might arise from my actions including expulsion.
Sen. Booker also uploaded Committee Confidential records to a publicly accessible Dropbox account with the heading “Booker Confidential – Kavanaugh Hearing Documents”.
By publicly releasing Committee Confidential records, Sen. Booker appears to have violated provisions 5 and/or 6 of Rule 29 of the Standing Rules of the Senate (Rev. Jan. 24, 2013), which stipulates:
- Any Senator, officer or employee of the Senate who shall disclose the secret or confidential business or proceedings of the Senate, including the business and proceedings of the committees, subcommittees and offices of the Senate shall be liable, if a Senator, to suffer expulsion from the body; and if an officer or employee, to dismissal from the service of the Senate, and to punishment for contempt.
- Whenever, by the request of the Senate or any committee thereof, any documents or papers shall be communicated to the Senate by the President or the head of any department relating to any matter pending in the Senate, the proceedings in regard to which are secret or confidential under the rules, said documents and papers shall be considered as confidential, and shall not be disclosed without leave of the Senate.
(See pp. 48-49: https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CDOC-113sdoc18/pdf/CDOC-113sdoc18.pdf )
We hereby request that the Senate Ethics Committee conduct a preliminary investigation into whether Sen. Booker violated Senate Rules by releasing Committee Confidential records through his social media accounts.
This isn’t the first scandal to haunt Booker. As Newark, New Jersey’s mayor, he’s been accused of squandering a $100 million donation from Facebook to the city’s struggling schools. Expect that story to follow Booker around, too.
Senator Bill Nelson, D-Florida — also recently made claims that Russian agents “have already penetrated certain counties in [Florida] and they now have free rein to move about.”
According to press reports: “[Nelson] added that voting machines in Florida have already been compromised by Russian meddling. Moreover, “[Nelson] has said repeatedly and unequivocally since Aug. 7 that Russia has access to election systems in Florida and could eliminate individual voters’ records.
” Nelson’s statements were not simply political remarks, but declarative statements about an issue extremely important to citizens and implicating the validity of our elections. Nelson made these declarations with the authority and credibility of the Senate, which has access to classified information not made available to the public.”
“Yet, there is no publicly known evidence supporting the veracity of Nelson’s remarks. Consequently, it appears either Nelson’s claims are based upon, and discloses, classified information he obtained from his position as a Senator, or evidence does not exist and his statements were false. In either instance, it appears that Nelson has violated Senate Rules and Regulations,” said Tom Fitton.
“The Florida Department of State has received zero information from Senator Nelson or his staff that support his claims,” said spokeswoman Sarah Revell. “Additionally, the Department has received no information from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Bureau of Investigation or the Florida Department of Law Enforcement that corroborates Senator Nelson’s statement and we have no evidence to support these claims.”
Questioned about his peculiar and shocking claim, Nelson insisted that he had information that election officials in Florida were not privy to. This gave the media, always looking for a way to protect Democrats, a green light to write stories that gave Nelson the benefit of the doubt. These stories were cast in a way to make the reader think about the vast gulf between state and federal government.
Only problem is that now the federal government has come out to say that no, they don’t have any idea what Nelson is talking about, either.
“Although we have not seen new or ongoing compromises of state or local election infrastructure in Florida, Russian government actors have previously demonstrated both the intent and capability to conduct malicious cyber operations,” DHS secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and FBI director Christopher Wray wrote this week. “DHS and the FBI will continue to notify any victim of a successful cyber intrusion into their election network in any jurisdiction nationwide. Every local jurisdiction could be a potential target this election season, whether through malicious cyber operations or influence operations.”