WASHINGTON – One of Michele Bachmann’s closest aides says that the Republican congresswoman knew of and approved under the table payments to an Iowa state senator who was involved with her presidential campaign last year.
Andy Parrish, Bachmann’s former chief of staff and longtime aide, swore in an affidavit that Bachmann “knew of and approved” paying Iowa state Sen. Kent Sorenson via another political action committee controlled by Bachmann. Iowa Senate ethics rules forbid lawmakers from accepting employment from political campaigns.
In his statement, Parrish said he has “no knowledge or opinion” if the payments to Sorenson violate the state’s ethics rules. While Parrish’s statement pertains to an ethics investigation by the Iowa Senate into Sorenson’s actions, it could have wider implications as a confidential congressional ethics probe continues to look into how Bachmann conducted her unsuccessful presidential bid.
Parrish stressed in his affidavit that he bore Bachmann no ill will (although he was dismissed from her employ in early 2012) and that his “testimony is not in any way or rebuke or betrayal of Congresswoman Bachmann,” adding that she is an “outstanding public servant.”