House Votes to Create Independent Ethics Office

The House has voted to create an independent outside office to investigate ethical lapses among its members and restore integrity to a system flawed by partisanship and inactivity.

The new Office of Congress Ethics would be charged with looking into possible misconduct and making recommendations to the House ethics committee, which would still have final say on issues of guilt or innocence.

The office would be made up of six people appointed by the Democratic and Republican leaders. Current members, federal employees and lobbyists would not be eligible.

The vote was 229-182, with most Republicans voting against the Democratic-backed plan.