Democrat Rep. Chaka Fattah (D-PA) has been serving in Congress for 20 years, but a few years back he made a failed attempt at becoming the Mayor of Philadelphia. The fallout from that failed election bid has now returned to bite Fattah in a way he likely never imagined.
The Department of Justice filed indictment charges against Fattah on Wednesday, connecting the congressman to a racketeering case that alleges the misappropriation of hundreds of thousands of dollars after his failed Mayoral campaign.
Fattah and several of his associates were charged with bribery, conspiracy to commit (several different kinds of) fraud, money laundering and other charges! The charges cover several different schemes that Fattah and his associates had running. The congressman has been under federal investigation for years, along with other Democrat political operatives in Pennsylvania and Florida.
“As charged in the indictment, Congressman Fattah and his associates embarked on a wide-ranging conspiracy involving bribery, concealment of unlawful campaign contributions and theft of charitable and federal funds to advance their own personal interests,” said Assistant Attorney General Caldwell. “When elected officials betray the trust and confidence placed in them by the public, the department will do everything we can to ensure that they are held accountable. Public corruption takes a particularly heavy toll on our democracy because it undermines people’s basic belief that our elected leaders are committed to serving the public interest, not to lining their own pockets.”
“The public expects their elected officials to act with honesty and integrity,” said U.S. Attorney Memeger. “By misusing campaign funds, misappropriating government funds, accepting bribes, and committing bank fraud, as alleged in the Indictment, Congressman Fattah and his co-conspirators have betrayed the public trust and undermined faith in government.”
Specifically, the indictment alleges that, in connection with his failed 2007 campaign to serve as mayor of Philadelphia, Fattah and certain associates borrowed $1 million from a wealthy supporter and disguised the funds as a loan to a consulting company. After he lost the election, Fattah allegedly returned $400,000 to the donor that the campaign had not used, and arranged for Educational Advancement Alliance (EAA), a non-profit entity that he founded and controlled, to repay the remaining $600,000 using charitable and federal grant funds that passed through two other companies, including one run by Brand. To conceal the contribution and repayment scheme, the defendants and others allegedly created sham contracts and made false entries in accounting records, tax returns and campaign finance disclosure statements.
While most Americans would expect that Congressman Fattah would resign at this point, they have likely forgotten that Fattah is a Democrat and has no shame. With that being said, Fattah is not yet planning on resigning, though he did hand over reins to the subcommittee that he chaired.
Pelosi: Congressman Fattah has rightly stepped down from his position as Ranking Member on the House CJS Appropriations Subcommittee
— Chad Pergram (@ChadPergram) July 29, 2015