WASHINGTON – The National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) called on Martha Robertson last week to release all communications related to an alleged fraudulent fundraising email her campaign sent on September 30, 2013 – including all communications prior to sending the email and all communications made after sending the email.
Robertson, a Tompkins County Legislator who is seeking the Democratic Party’s endorsement for Congress in New York’s 23rd District, claimed in the email that her campaign caught “GOP ops trying to shut down her website” and asked recipients of the email to call the campaign office if the site was not working “anytime until midnight.”
According to the NRCC, the email was sent on the last day of the fundraising quarter and Robertson has never offered any proof to substantiate her claim.
Since sending that email, Robertson has been the subject of a letter asking the FBI and US Attorney to open an investigation into whether Robertson committed a felony by violating the federal wire fraud statute – 18 U.S.C. Section 1343, and a complaint filed with the New York Board of Elections alleging that Robertson violated state election law by sending fraudulent communications. Robertson also told Roll Call that she was hiring a cyber-security firm to investigate the incident, then later admitted that she had no intention of doing so.
Republican officials say that if Robertson or her campaign did violate federal law by committing wire fraud, she could be expelled from Congress. They say that voters deserve to know before November whether this is a possibility and Robertson owes it to them to release all communications, not protected by attorney client privilege, related to her September 30 email.
Robertson is challenging Tom Reed in the 2014 election. Earlier this month, her campaign said that Reed needs to release all communications he’s had with the House Ethics Committee, in relation to the divestment of his law practice following election to Congress.