House Democrat Under Fire For Inviting Herself To The Met Gala

The House Ethics Committee investigates Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) for allegedly violating House rules and federal law by seeking an invite to the Met Gala. An Office of Congressional Ethics report came out Monday stating that if Rep. Maloney solicited impermissible gifts, then House rules and federal law were violated. A pending investigation is not a conclusion of wrongdoing, however.

Maloney was cut from the invite list in 2016 even though she had been attending the Met Gala for a long time. Former president of the Met, Emily Rafferty, gave testimony to investigators that Maloney called her to request an invite. Following the alleged call, Maloney was invited to the Met Gala that year and in subsequent years after that.

Investigators question whether Maloney also asked for an invitation to the 2020 Met Gala after finding an email thread with an employee asking whether she was invited. Maloney also asked the employee how to contact the Met’s government affairs office. The problem is that lawmakers can only attend a charitable gathering for free if the invitation is unsolicited.

Maloney says she doesn’t remember asking for an invite to the Met Gala. Her attorney’s made a statement attached to the ethics report indicating that her attendance at the Met Gala complied with all House gift rules, laws, and regulations. Another spokesperson said she was confident this investigation would be dismissed and was disappointed by the allegations in the ethics report.

Since Maloney lost a member-on-member primary race, Maloney is leaving congress after this year. It may be essential to note that her chief of staff attempted to have New York’s redistricting commission put the Metropolitan Museum of Art inside a new district represented by Maloney. Investigators found Maloney’s aide had drafted a letter on behalf of the official from the Met for his review. The House Rep. also attempted to ask the New York independent redistricting commission to put the Met in a future Maloney- represented district.