A former chief of staff to U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann signed and released an affidavit on Monday that says the congresswoman approved payments made to Iowa Sen. Kent Sorenson for work on her presidential campaign, but also claims that she was not aware those payments violated Iowa Senate ethics rules.
In the affidavit, former Bachmann chief of staff Andy Parrish claimed that the congresswoman was aware of the arrangement to pay Sorenson, who was running her Iowa presidential campaign, through a third party group. Iowa Senate ethics rules ban state lawmakers from accepting payments from presidential campaigns, so an arrangement was made to pay Sorenson about $7,500 a month through group C&M Strategies out of Colorado. But that company was run by Bachmann fundraiser Guy Short, who was serving as the campaign’s national political director at the time.
Those payments are now the subject of an Iowa Senate Ethics inquiry, after former Bachmann staffer Peter Waldron alleged the same violation in a complaint to the Federal Election Commission (FEC).
“Congresswoman Bachmann knew of and approved this arrangement,” Parrish said in his affidavit. “She, like the rest of us, understood from Senator Sorenson that it did not run afoul of any Iowa Senate ethics rules. We relied on his representations in this regard.”
Go here for the full affidavit from Parrish, which was released by his attorney, John Gilmore.