Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren pleaded ignorance Tuesday, saying she wasn’t aware her campaign attempted to raise money off of her opposition to Supreme Court Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh.
Ms. Warren was challenged on the September fundraising email, which has spawned an ethics complaint in the Senate, at a debate Tuesday. The Democrat tried to brush the question aside, until the moderator pointedly asked her to respond to whether she did raise funds off her vote.
“Actually, I don’t know,” she responded.
Ms. Warren declared her opposition to Justice Kavanaugh early on, and described her opposition in a Sept. 17 email to supporters that asked for them to contribute to her re-election campaign.
The watchdog group Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust (FACT) says asking for money to show support for a future vote is a violation of Senate ethics. They filed a complaint against Ms. Warren and fellow Democratic Sen. Kamala Harris of California.
The Senate’s rules prohibit senators from “cashing in” by using their official positions for personal gain.
Republican Geoff Diehl, who is trying to unseat Ms. Warren in next week’s election, raised the issue at Tuesday’s debate.
“That is something you should not be doing, first of all, when we are having a national discussion about the Supreme Court — trying to fundraise off it — but you did and turns out it’s illegal,” he said.
Ms. Warren acted surprised Tuesday to learn there was an ethics complaint against her.
“Is there?” she asked. “I will check into it, but I don’t know.”
The campaign didn’t respond to The Washington Times about why Ms. Warren wasn’t aware of the fundraising activities, but following the debate, Ms. Warren attacked the group who filed the complaint.
“That is a shadowy, dark-money group and that there’s nothing to it,” she told reporters.
A Boston Globe poll published last week shows Ms. Warren leading her challenger by 22 points ahead of next week’s election.