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Grassley wants more information on John Kerry’s finances, potential conflicts of interest

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) wants more details on John Kerry’s personal finances and how Biden’s climate envoy avoids conflicts between his official duties and his private investments.

The big picture: Grassley, the senior Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, sent a letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday for more information after Axios revealed new details about Kerry’s lucrative work in finance and finance. energy investment after completing his term as secretary himself.

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  • “The functioning of good government requires staunch observance of ethical rules,” Grassley wrote. “It is not clear exactly what issues Mr. Kerry was barred from working on and whether he received waivers for specific matters from which he would otherwise be challenged.”

Between the lines: As Axios reported on Friday, Kerry took a $ 5 million salary from Bank of America last year and made hundreds of thousands more in speaking fees and consulting income.

  • Some of his former clients are doing major energy and environmental business, over which Kerry is now poised to exert significant political influence as Special Presidential Envoy for Climate.

  • Kerry also urged major financial institutions to collaborate in efforts to tackle global climate change.

  • According to a Politico report in March, this included pleas to Brian Moynihan, CEO of Bank of America.

The plot: The State Department told Axios last week that Kerry had signed an ethical pledge imposed by Biden prohibiting him from participating in specific official actions affecting his former clients and employers.

It is also bound by federal ethics laws which restrict this activity.

  • Grassley wants to know exactly what Kerry is forbidden to do and if any of those rules have been lifted.

  • The senator’s letter also requests “all documents, including memos, emails and other similar documents, relating to all assessments of potential conflicts of interest, apparent and / or actual.”

  • The ministry declined to comment on the letter.

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