Rep. Victoria Spartz Denies Abusing Staff After Ethics Inquiry


Rep. Victoria Spartz’s (R-IN) campaign has refuted claims that she is the focus of a House Ethics Committee investigation regarding her staff treatment, following a report detailing alleged “abuse.”

Spartz stands accused of verbally mistreating staff, cutting their pay, and creating a work environment filled with “rage” and “general toxicity,” according to Politico.

Her campaign adviser, Dan Hazelwood, denied any contact from the committee and downplayed the accusations, including one where former employees claimed Spartz said, “I would rather die than not complete a task. Can you give me that same level of commitment?”

Rep. Victoria Spartz (R-IN) speaks during a Lincoln Day Dinner, Thursday, May 2, 2024, in Noblesville, Indiana. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

“The congresswoman has long criticized that too many in Washington seek power, pay, and privilege but do nothing,” Hazelwood told Truth Voices.

“When the system is held accountable, we get anonymous rumors and exaggerated stories. She did not ask anyone to die. She does not ask for personal chores or staff to cook her dinners. She insists on accountability for delivering policy results to the American people,” he added.

Regarding the alleged pay cuts amounting to “tens of thousands of dollars,” Hazelwood remarked, “Staff responsibilities changed. People who had dual jobs with increased pay due to workload shifted back to single jobs with lower pay, but still higher than previously.”

Truth Voices pressed Hazelwood on allegations of Spartz’s staff mistreatment, which date back more than two years, and inquired about the general sentiment among Spartz’s staff.

“Congresswoman Spartz prioritizes an office that delivers results for the people of the 5th District. That’s more important than Hill staff. She has long-serving constituent caseworkers consistently delivering outstanding results. She will continue to adjust staff as needed to achieve outcomes,” he said.

“Ultimately, it’s the people who matter, not the staff. While there are hard feelings, there are also many loyal current and past staff,” he added.

A House Ethics Committee representative declined to comment to Truth Voices.

The complaints were filed last month, and the committee reportedly delayed investigating to avoid appearances of election interference. Since the filings, Spartz warned staff against speaking to Politico reporters.

“If you feel strongly to badmouth me I am ok with it … but please do not use some made-up speculations that could put someone’s life in danger … it’s unethical and will not serve you well in the future,” she wrote in a text message shared by a former staffer to the outlet.

Patrick Slowinski, Spartz’s chief of staff, and a communications director recently resigned, with Slowinski serving less than a month.

“We are sorry to see Patrick depart; he is very competent,” Hazelwood said. “After a difficult primary and announcing her run again, the office is being reorganized with several positions modified.”

Spartz has been accused of comparing her aides’ writing skills to those of elementary-school students, calling staffers “idiots,” and being described as “manic” by those under her.

Politico labeled Spartz the “House’s ‘worst boss’” in 2022, citing multiple interviews and the nonpartisan website Legistorm, which listed her as the House member with the most employee turnover in 2021, the year she took office.

Spartz dismissed the allegations, stating, “I’m grateful to my current and former staff. I work extremely hard at a pace that is not for everyone. I remain focused on working hard for the people of Indiana.”

Having immigrated from Ukraine to the U.S., Spartz was one of the first lawmakers to visit the country when Russia resumed its conflict. She is among the few foreign-born House lawmakers and the only one from Ukraine.

Spartz recently won her GOP primary against Republican rivals and will face Democrat Deborah Pickett in November, a race she is anticipated to win.

Ross O'Keefe
Ross O'Keefe
Breaking News Reporter. Ross pitches and writes polished quick-hit pieces about a variety of subjects with a focus on politics. He graduated from the University of Maryland's Phillip Merrill College of Journalism in 2023.

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