Report: Pearce among those who sought to weaken independent ethics office

Rep. Steve Pearce was one of the Republican members of Congress who voted to gut the independent office looking into ethics, according to a news report. The vote came during a closed-door meeting by Republicans and became public Monday. After a major public outcry, Republican lawmakers changed course Tuesday and announced they scrapped plans to remove the functions from Office of Congressional Ethics. Politico reported that Pearce was one of those who supported removing many key functions of the independent OCE, including its ability to refer allegations to law enforcement. The now-dead proposal sought to send give more power to the House Ethics Committee, which is made up of members of Congress.