In March of last year, Maloney urged constituents to “do their part” and “stay at home.”
“Don’t go out if you don’t need to, minimize your contact with other people. If a member of your family is sick, the whole family’s got to stay home so we don’t go spread it. That’s why having some groceries in the house to last a week or two is important,” Maloney told WAMC’s Ian Pickus at the time, even suggesting phone or email as the “best” way to check on neighbors.
“We have a role to play because if each of us does the right things in terms of handwashing and social distancing, we will stop this virus in its tracks, and that will add an enormous benefit for all of us,” he said.
However, a look at his financial disclosures suggests he did not heed his own advice, spending thousands on “ground transportation” over the following months.
Washington Free Beacon reported:
Over the next nine months, however, he spent nearly $29,000 on “ground transportation” and “automobile expenses,” financial disclosures show. The disbursements included nearly $20,000 in lease and insurance payments, more than $3,600 in collision repairs, nearly $2,200 in gas, more than $2,100 in rental car fees, and nearly $500 for a satellite radio subscription.
Maloney’s expenses were unusual in his region. Rep. Antonio Delgado (D., N.Y.), for example, did not disclose any car-related expenses in 2020. Delgado’s 19th Congressional District is nearly six times the size of Maloney’s neighboring 18th district. Like Maloney, Delgado pivoted to virtual events during the pandemic. Under U.S. campaign finance law, candidates cannot use donor funds to pay for personal travel.
According to Free Beacon, Maloney did not return a request for comment on the matter.
Some are perplexed by his expenditures, given that in-person campaigning had been virtually suspended. Maloney even posted to social media in March 2020, boasting he was “practicing safe social distancing by working from home”:
Maloney and the DCCC came under the spotlight earlier this year after the committee proudly hired an ex-gang member and a staffer with a history of anti-police statements to assist Democrats in the House in maintaining its slim majority.
Last month, Breitbart News reported Maloney “failed to report a series of stock trades he made on time, a potential violation of federal law.” His series of missteps reportedly have some Democrats wondering if he’s well-suited to maintain his role as DCCC chair, according to reports.