Resolution would create special committee to examine finances, more

LANSING, Mich., March 24, 2022 — Members of the House Democratic Caucus held a press conference today to discuss their resolution calling for the creation of a special committee to investigate the activities of former House Speaker Lee Chatfield.

“The fact of the matter is, we don’t know the facts of these matters. Media reports have raised several legitimate questions over the last several weeks — questions that we currently have no way to answer,” said House Democratic Leader Donna Lasinski (D-Scio Township). “Our resolution would create the mechanism to get the answers that the people of Michigan deserve.”

“Citizens hold their elected officials to a high standard, not just because we are their voice in their government, but because they rightly trust us to act with honesty and integrity in the course of our duties,” said state Rep. Joe Tate (D-Detroit). “There are serious allegations about the former speaker violating that trust, and we’re urging the current leadership to allow this investigation to move forward.”

Reporting from news outlets across the state include questions about Chatfield’s use of his office and employees; whether he funneled political contributions to himself and his staff; how he and his consultants managed his political action committees (PACs); payments for extravagant travel while in office; and more.

“As a former police officer, I know that there are actions that don’t rise to the level of criminal behavior but still violate the ethics of our institution. That’s what we’re talking about here,” said state Rep. Terry Sabo (D-Muskegon). “Ethical breaches are just as important to investigate, and this action will supplement, not interfere with, any kind of criminal investigation.”

“We, as members of the House, have not only the ability but the responsibility to see these questions through to their conclusion. The people we represent deserve nothing more or less than the truth,” said state Rep. Tyrone Carter (D-Detroit), sponsor of the resolution. “It is up to the current speaker to decide whether he believes the same and will bring this resolution forward — or not.”