OCE Referral Regarding Rep. Markwayne Mullin
On December 23, 2013, the Office of Congressional Ethics transmitted a referral to the Committee on Ethics of the United States House of Representatives regarding Rep. Markwayne Mullin.
Nature of Review
In 2013, Representative Markwayne Mullin regularly hosted a weekly radio talk show and appeared in numerous radio, television, and internet commercials for Mullin Plumbing, Inc. and affiliated companies. He also served as an officer or board member for the companies. He received income from the companies totaling more than $600,000 in 2013.
If Representative Mullin received more than $26,955 of outside earned income in 2013, he may have violated House rules and federal law.
If Representative Mullin was personally involved in endorsing any services pursuant to outside employment, he may have violated House rules and standards of conduct.
If Representative Mullin served for compensation as an officer or as a member of the board of directors, or both, of one or more of the companies, he may have violated House rules.
The Board of the OCE recommended that the Committee on Ethics further review the allegations concerning outside earned income because there is substantial reason to believe that the income Representative Mullin received exceeded the outside earned income limit.
The Board recommends that the Committee on Ethics further review the allegation concerning Representative Mullin endorsing services because there is substantial reason to believe that Representative Mullin appeared in commercials for an outside employer while serving as a Member of Congress.
The Board recommends that the Committee on Ethics further review the allegation concerning Representative Mullin serving as a compensated officer or board member because there is substantial reason to believe that Representative Mullin received compensation for the services he provided as an officer or board member of the companies.
On March 24, 2014, the Committee on Ethics released a statement indicating it would continue to gather information necessary to complete its review. The Committee published the OCE report and finding and announced the allegations would be further reviewed pursuant to Committee Rule 18(a).
On August 10, 2018, the Committee on Ethics released a statement concluding that Representative Mullin made good faith efforts to seek the Committee's informal guidance on issues regarding his family business, and substantially complied with the advice. However, the Committee found that Representative Mullin must return $40,000 mistakenly paid to him in 2013 by a company he transferred to his wife in 2012.
The Committee emphasized that under no circumstances should a Member be actively involved in personally selling or endorsing good services in which the Member has afinancial interset. Upon the publication of the Committee report and repayment of the $40,000 to Mullin West, the Committee considers this matter closed.