Press Releases

Rep. Mike Lawler Named to ‘Most Corrupt’ Politicians List

May 22, 2024

End Citizens United (ECU), a grassroots campaign finance reform organization, today inducted Representative Mike Lawler (NY-17) to its inaugural list of ‘Most Corrupt’ politicians running for reelection. The initiative is aimed at exposing and defeating the most egregious perpetrators of corruption in Washington.

“Representative Lawler has prioritized his political career and his personal interests over the needs of Hudson Valley families,” said End Citizens United President Tiffany Muller. “His pro-donor, pro-corporate agenda has been a boon for corporations as they continue to gouge Americans and fuel inflation. It’s no coincidence that his first-term in office coincides with the least productive Congress in American history. We’re going to hold him accountable by exposing his corrupt record and engaging with voters through Election Day to make sure they know just how corrupt he is.”

Since going to Washington, Lawler has not accomplished anything meaningful for Hudson Valley families. Instead, he’s fallen in line with party leaders and has been a rubber stamp for their extremism. Lawler has developed a close alliance with corporate special interests, raking in $250,000 from corporate PACs while pushing their agenda––like fighting for tax handouts and cutting funding for tax enforcement. As a former fossil fuel lobbyist, his deep ties to industry have only blossomed, voting for a bill to line the pockets of the oil and gas industry and cutting funding for renewable energy. In return for Lawler’s efforts, big oil and gas corporate PACs have rewarded him with $13,000 in campaign contributions. Additionally, as a political operative, Lawler was on the payroll of a multi-million dollar effort to elect Donald Trump, who is threatening to end American democracy and facing 91 felony counts. Lawler’s record is so indefensible that he barred press from public events to avoid scrutiny and went so far as to threaten forced removal of any constituents attempting to record his public remarks.

In the efforts to hold serial fraudster George Santos accountable, Lawler proved that moral and objective leadership is not his style. Instead of joining the chorus of voices calling for accountability, Lawler protected Santos. But once it became clear that Santos was going to be kicked out of Congress, he quickly changed his tune and had the audacity to take credit for it. To this day, Lawler refuses to donate to charity a $2,900 campaign check he received from Santos.

ECU will highlight Lawler’s record of corruption and will work to engage voters and the media between now and Election Day, including in a new digital video released today.

ECU is dedicated to combating the two biggest challenges facing our democracy: the corrosive impact of Big Money and attempts to block access to the ballot box. Since its founding in 2015, the group has had over 1 million donors and raised $200 million, with an average donation of just $14. The group has more than 4 million members nationwide.