No sanctions for now, but ethics office says Alan Grayson complaint is “substantial”

grayson-apThe Office of Congressional Ethics said Tuesday it found “substantial reason to believe” that U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson ran afoul of rules that forbid Congressmen from running outside businesses.

Grayson, an Orlando Demorcat who’s running for U.S. Senate, faces no sanctions for now, but the House Ethics Committee said it will continue to look into the matter. In a strongly worded rebuttal that ran 35 pages, Grayson’s attorney dismissed the Office of Congressional Ethics’ findings as “irreparably tainted,” “warped,” “irresponsible,” “utterly unconscionable,” “ridiculous” and “Kafkaesque.”

Grayson operated a hedge fund with $16 million in assets — a tiny sum by hedge fund standards, but a business that has loomed large in Grayson’s primary battle with U.S. Rep. Patrick Murphy of Jupiter. Grayson said Tuesday that 97 percent of the money in the fund belonged to him and his children, and the other 3 percent belonged to two friends he knew before he was elected to Congress.

“This is what’s referred to as a friends-and-family fund, not some kind of multi-billion-dollar hedge fund,” Grayson told reporters. “I am not an investment adviser.”

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