U.S. Representative Ilhan Omar reportedly funneled millions of dollars to her new husband's consulting firm including a whopping $189,000 in March, weeks after she announced her remarriage, new campaign data has revealed. Omar has been allegedly channelizing funds to her husband Tim Mynett's consulting firm for more than two years now, which has raised eyebrows among watchdogs and political experts.
The Minnesota Democrat's campaign is the biggest client of her husband Tim Mynett's firm E Street Group. The group received almost one-third of the entire Democrat's campaign money, the Washington Examiner reported. Omar's actions have been under media scrutiny since last year after Mynett's then wife accused him of abruptly walking out of their marriage.
Omar Under Scrutiny
The latest campaign data has revealed that Omar, 38, paid Mynett's consulting firm a total of more than $878,000 since he began working for her in 2018. This includes $189,000 in March this year, weeks after the couple announced they were husband and wife. In the first quarter of the year, Mynett's E Street Group received as much as $292,000 from Omar's campaign for promoting, fundraising, journey and different companies, in response to a federal marketing campaign finance report filed on Wednesday.
If this amount sounds big, payments to E Street Group in 2019 alone totaled more than $500,000. The majority of the payments were made after Omar's victory in Democratic seat at the November 2018 midterm elections. And if payments at this rate continue to be made, an estimated $1.16 million will flow into Mynett's company this year, more than double it received in 2019.
A Legal Loophole
Omar and Mynett's relationship became public last year in August after allegations were made by Mynett's then wife in her divorce filing that the Somalia-born Democrat was having an affair with a member of her political advisory and consulting team, who was a married man. Omar too was married to her second husband at that time.
Mynett's former wife also alleged in her courtroom papers that he walked out of marriage abruptly after admitting to having an affair with Omar. Initially, both denied the affair publicly but finally, Omar introduced their nuptials on Instagram in March.
Legally, Mynett's hiring couldn't have been stopped because of an age-old loophole in the country's political system. The arrangement of hiring a family member as a political consultant is possible because of a 1960s federal anti-nepotism statute.
According to the statute, members of Congress are prohibited from hiring relatives for government jobs but it does not block their family members from doing campaign work for them.
Omar had tweeted in March after her marriage that she has received a 'no objection' from federal authorities to continue her business relationship with her husband. However, if the Federal Election Commission launches an investigation into the matter, Omar will have to prove that she is paying market-based rates to Mynett's company for the services without inflating the prices.