Ethics Watchdog Calls for Investigation into FL Congressional Candidate Annette Taddeo
Evidence Shows Annette Taddeo Violated Financial Disclosure Laws
Washington, D.C. – September 23, 2022 – The non-partisan ethics watchdog, the Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust (FACT), filed a complaint requesting the House Committee on Ethics investigate whether congressional candidate Annette Taddeo of Florida failed to disclose financial information.
Federal law and House Ethics rules require House candidates and Members to publicly disclose their financial information to the public. Under public disclosure requirements, a candidate must file a financial disclosure report that provides a “full and complete” statement of the Member’s assets, debts, and income. Specifically, when reporting an investment account like a 401k that holds other assets, the underlying assets must be reported.
On July 6, 2022, Taddeo filed a financial disclosure reporting investment accounts and a trust, but no underlying information concerning these assets. Taddeo reported she held an asset described as “LanguageSpeak, Inc. 401K” and her spouse held assets described as “Florida International University 401(k),” University of Miami 401(k)” and “Simplified Employee Pension IRA Charles Schwab.” However, it does not appear Taddeo reported any underlying assets for these accounts.
Additionally, a candidate must disclose trusts in which the candidate, spouse, or dependent child has a beneficial interest and information about the trust including the name, value, and income received. Taddeo indicated the existence of a trust but did not report any information about it. Additionally, in a financial report Taddeo filed in 2016, she reported underlying assets held in the Elizabeth M. Taddeo Revocable Trust and indicated the beneficiary was her dependent child. Because Taddeo did have access to information about the underlying investments of the trust, she would also be required to disclose the trust's underlying assets if that was the exempted trust referenced.
“This law is extremely important, and it must be strictly enforced because it is the only method to determine whether Members or candidates have conflicts of interest. There is no excuse for violating this law even one time, and when a House candidate fails to comply with the disclosure laws it is instructive of whether they will comply with the law if elected—and it is especially concerning when they don’t,” said Kendra Arnold, Executive Director of FACT.
A full copy of the complaint can be found here.
FACT is a nonprofit organization to promoting accountability, ethics, and transparency in government and civic arenas.
For more on FACT, visit: http://www.factdc.org/