Other Group

Congressional Integrity Project

Founded:

2020

Executive Director:

Kyle Herrig

Type:

Opposition research

The Congressional Integrity Project (CIP) is a left-of-center activist group that opposes Republican members of Congress and exposes allegedly compromising information about them with the intent of damaging their public images and re-election prospects. In particular, the project targets lawmakers who allegedly hold further-right beliefs or were not sufficiently critical of the Capitol riot in January 2021. However, the CIP is also hostile to all Republicans who support reducing government spending on social welfare programs, claiming that they have used the COVID-19 pandemic and the ensuing economic recession as a reason to “block” left-progressive economic policies. The project openly states that it also targets the “friends and family” of the legislators it chooses to attack. [1]

The CIP first started issuing statements on the alleged wrongdoing of Republican lawmakers in late September 2020, less than two months before the general election in November. CIP has shown no sign of public activity since January 2021 and appears to be inactive. [2]

The leadership of the CIP is made up of high-level Democratic Party operatives, including former senior staffers for the campaigns of former President Barack Obama, former Vice President Al Gore, and influential Democratic legislators such as Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT). [3]

Public Statements

Between September 2020 and January 2021, Congressional Integrity Project issued press releases detailing alleged unethical activity by Republican lawmakers, as well as their associates and family members. [4]

In October 2020, the CIP engaged in a publicity stunt involving its statement on Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI). On its website, the project posted poorly translated, error-filled versions of the statement in Russian and Ukrainian, claiming that this would make the statement “easier for the Senator and his associates to read.” The CIP acknowledged that it had used Google Translate to create the Russian and Ukrainian versions of the statement. [5] Senator Johnson was one of the project’s primary targets throughout its active period: the CIP issued at least ten statements featuring or mentioning him. [6]

In January 2021, shortly after the protests in Washington, D.C., over suspected fraud in the 2020 presidential election results and the ensuing riot at the Capitol building, the CIP issued a statement calling on the staffers of Senators Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Josh Hawley (R-MO) to undermine their bosses by resigning and criticizing them in public. As part of its statement, the project released a list with dozens of names of the two senators’ senior staff members. [7]

Leadership

Kyle Herrig is the executive director of the Congressional Integrity Project. He is also the founder and president of Accountable.US, a pressure group which demanded that businesses blacklist any individual who had worked in the administration of President Donald Trump and refuse to hire them. [8]

Mindy Myers is a senior advisor to the CIP. She was previously executive director of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. Myers also previously worked for the campaigns of Democratic Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), and was the New Hampshire state director for the 2008 presidential campaign of President Barack Obama. [9]

Melanie Sloan and Brad Woodhouse sit on the board of the CIP. Sloan was the founding executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, a left-of-center legal activist group. Woodhouse is the executive director of Protect Our Care, an activist group which lobbies against efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Previously, Woodhouse managed left-of-center groups such as Americans United for Change, American Bridge 21st Century, and Correct the Record. [10]

References

  1. “About.” Congressional Integrity Project. Accessed November 22, 2021. https://congressionalintegrity.org/about/ ^
  2. “Press Releases.” Congressional Integrity Project. Accessed November 22, 2021. https://congressionalintegrity.org/news/press/ ^
  3. “About.” Congressional Integrity Project. Accessed November 22, 2021. https://congressionalintegrity.org/about/ ^
  4. “Press Releases.” Congressional Integrity Project. Accessed November 22, 2021. https://congressionalintegrity.org/news/press/ ^
  5. “Ron Johnson Peddles Misinformation; Refuses to Address Domestic Terrorism.” Congressional Integrity Project. October 14, 2020. Accessed November 22, 2021. https://congressionalintegrity.org/%d1%80%d0%be%d0%bd-%d0%b4%d0%b6%d0%be%d0%bd%d1%81%d0%be%d0%bd-%d1%80%d0%b0%d1%81%d0%bf%d1%80%d0%be%d1%81%d1%82%d1%80%d0%b0%d0%bd%d1%8f%d0%b5%d1%82-%d0%b4%d0%b5%d0%b7%d0%b8%d0%bd%d1%84%d0%be%d1%80/ ^
  6. “Press Releases.” Congressional Integrity Project. Accessed November 22, 2021. https://congressionalintegrity.org/news/press/ ^
  7. “Watchdog to Cruz and Hawley Staff: It’s Never too Late to do the Right Thing.” Congressional Integrity Project. January 14, 2021. Accessed November 22, 2021. https://congressionalintegrity.org/watchdog-to-cruz-and-hawley-staff-its-never-too-late-to-do-the-right-thing/ ^
  8. “About.” Congressional Integrity Project. Accessed November 22, 2021. https://congressionalintegrity.org/about/ ^
  9. “About.” Congressional Integrity Project. Accessed November 22, 2021. https://congressionalintegrity.org/about/ ^
  10. “About.” Congressional Integrity Project. Accessed November 22, 2021. https://congressionalintegrity.org/about/ ^
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