Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN-05) paid her husband’s political consulting firm another $292,000 in campaign funds during the first quarter of 2020.
At that pace, her campaign committee is on track to pay E Street Group, a firm owned by her husband Tim Mynett, roughly $1.1 million this year.
Despite the poor optics, Omar has actually increased campaign disbursements to her husband’s firm ever since the matter was first revealed in August of last year. In the third quarter of 2019, Omar paid E Street Group $146,713, followed by $217,000 in the fourth quarter.
Between August 2018 and June 2019, E Street Group received a total of just $223,000 from the Omar campaign.
Omar was alleged to be having an affair with Mynett last summer, but denied that they were in a relationship.
In March, however, Omar announced on Instagram that she and Mynett are now married. Omar divorced the father of her three children in October while Mynett parted ways with his wife two months later.
According to a campaign finance report filed April 15, Omar’s campaign committee, Ilhan for Congress, paid E Street Group $292,000 between January and March of this year. That figure is more than half of what E Street Group received from Omar all of last year.
E Street Group received $523,000 in all of 2019 and was the top recipient of disbursements from Omar’s campaign, according to the Federal Election Commission. The second top recipient, Knock Knock LLC, received just $100,000 in all of 2019, $423,000 less than E Street Group.
Omar’s involvement with Mynett prompted a national nonprofit to lodge an FEC complaint against her, which claimed that the freshman congresswoman used campaign funds for “romantic companionship.”
But Omar defended the payments to E Street Group in a statement released last month and said she “consulted with a top FEC campaign attorney to ensure there were no possible legal issues with our relationship.”
“We were told this is not uncommon and that no, there weren’t,” she said. “It’s disappointing that reporters would rather amplify the baseless claims and misinformation of right-wing Twitter instead of talking to actual experts on the law. This is everything wrong with media coverage in 2020.”
Omar’s failures in her first term in Congress recently led one prominent Minneapolis civil rights attorney and Black Lives Matter activist to endorse her Democratic primary opponent.
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Anthony Gockowski is managing editor of The Minnesota Sun and The Ohio Star. Follow Anthony on Twitter. Email tips to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo “Ilhan Omar” by Leopaltik1242. CC BY-SA 4.0.Background Photo “Ilhan Omar and Tim Mynett” by CAIR.