Federal officials are looking into the spending history of embattled Rep. Aaron Schock (R-Ill.), who announced earlier this week he would resign in the wake of a series of scandals, according to NBC News.
One issue dogging Schock is whether the congressman inflated mileage reimbursements he billed to the federal government and his campaign. Politico reported that Schock was reimbursed for some 90,000 miles his Chevrolet Tahoe never traveled. Earlier, Schock was the subject of an embarrassing profile focusing on his lavish congressional office, whose decor was inspired by the hit PBS drama “Downton Abbey.”
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Federal officials are looking at Schock’s spending of campaign money and tax issues, according to NBC News’ Pete Williams. A federal law enforcement official told NBC News that the IRS is heavily involved in the effort, and that the FBI is monitoring the probe.
On top of the questions about mileage reimbursement, the 33-year-old lawmarker has reportedly spent thousands of dollars of federal money on furniture and campaign funds on a house in Illinois.
Schock will leave office on March 31. “I do this with a heavy heart. Serving the people of the 18th District is the highest and greatest honor I have had in my life. I thank them for their faith in electing me and letting me represent their interests in Washington. I have given them my all over the last six years. I have traveled to all corners of the District to meet with the people I’ve been fortunate to be able to call my friends and neighbors,” Schock said in a statement Tuesday.
“But the constant questions over the last six weeks have proven a great distraction that has made it too difficult for me to serve the people of the 18th District with the high standards that they deserve and which I have set for myself. I have always sought to do what’s best for my constituents and I thank them for the opportunity to serve,” Schock added in the statement.
“With this decision, Rep. Schock has put the best interests of his constituents and the House first,” Speaker John Boehner said in a statement on Tuesday. “I appreciate Aaron’s years of service, and I wish him well in the future.”
The race to fill Schock's seat has already begun. Illinois state Sen. Darin LaHood, son of President Obama’s former Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, announced plans to throw his hat into the ring on Wednesday.