Skip to content

House Ethics Committee Finds Whitfield In Violation



The House Ethics Committee found Rep. Ed Whitfield violated House rules by giving his wife, a registered lobbyist with the Humane Society, special favors and inappropriate access to his staff. “Specifically, the committee finds that Rep. Ed Whitfield failed to prohibit lobbying contacts between his staff and wife, Constance Harriman, and dispensed special privileges to Ms. Harriman, but that he did not violate the rule against improperly using his position for his own interest.”

 

Because the committee found that he didn’t intentionally violate House rules regarding lobbying by a lawmaker’s spouse, they decided not to sanction nor censure him. The committee did sharply criticize Rep. Whitfield over the access granted to his wife, including meetings between her and her employer, Humane Society Legislative Fund (HSLF), and his staff. Those meetings resulted in the introduction of the PAST Act, which was written in conjunction between Whitfield’s staff and his wife’s employer HSLF and Humane Society of the United States.

 

The committee stated, “Rep. Whitfield’s staff granted Ms. Harriman unique access to the office, and treated her in a deferential matter, because she was the member’s spouse.”  They continued, “When she registered to lobby for HSLF, and later joined HSLF as a paid lobbyist, her access to Representative Whitfield’s staff, and the staffs’ treatment of her, should have changed accordingly. But by all accounts, nothing changed.”

 

Whitfield defended his actions by stating he didn’t know his wife was a registered lobbyist until several years into her job. House Ethics Committee members questioned that assertion by Whitfield as his wife was listed as a paid lobbyist with HSLF since 2011.

 

Whitfield will not seek reelection. Jamie Comer won the Kentucky primary for Rep. Whitfield’s seat, defeating a long-time member of Whitfield’s staff, Michael Pape.

More Stories

  • Live from Cornersville

    ReporTV will be live from the Cornersville Lions Club, beginning at 6:00 pm. Read More
  • Latest Issue July 23 18

    Read More
  • Celebration makes plans for Adult Pony WGC to return

    The Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration recently made plans to split the amateur pony and 15.2 & under world grand championship classes. In 2017, The Celebration decided to combine the two divisions into a single world grand championship class due to a lack of entries in both divisions. Read More
  • Lead Line WGC moved to Sunday night

    The Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration has announced that the Lead Line World Grand Championship has been moved from the first Saturday morning performance to the Sunday evening schedule at the 80th Annual Celebration.  Read More
  • International Horse Show updates

    The 40th Annual International Pleasure & Colt Grand Championship, scheduled for July 27 - August 4, 2018 is soon approaching and promises to be the year's greatest showcase for the flat-shod Tennessee Walking Horse... Read More
  • Obituary – Jerry Lunsford

    The Report has recently learned of the passing of Jerry Lunsford. He was a long time member of the Georgia Walking Horse Association. A full obituary will be posted when it becomes available.  Read More
  • Birth Announcement – Juke Rein Jenne'

    Justin, Hope and Jagger Jenne' happily welcome the arrival of their son and baby brother, Juke Rein Jenne’ on July 10, 2018. He weighed 7 lbs. 4 ounces and measured 20 inches in length.  Read More
  • TWHNC updates class schedule

    The Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration, scheduled for Aug. 22–Sept. 1, has updated their original class schedule... Read More
  • TWHBEA Election coming soon

    August 1, 2018, is the deadline to have your candidacy declared for the Int'l Board of Directors at TWHBEA.  TWHBEA needs enthusiasm,  fresh perspective, and help, every term to continue growth and prosperity.  Read More
  • Waynesville Charity schedule update

    The Waynesville Charity Show, scheduled for July 20-21, has updated their original class schedule... Read More