Florida Republicans call for investigation into Democrats’ PPP loan
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (CAPITOL NEWS SERVICE) - Five Florida congressmen are calling for an investigation into the pandemic relief loan secured by the Florida Democratic Party in May.
It is still not known who signed off on the application for the loan, and the Republican congressmen believe criminal charges could be warranted.
Republicans have used the $780,000 PPP loan secured by the Florida Democratic Party in local and national attack ads.
After months of not receiving a full explanation of how the loan was secured, they’re now calling on the Small Business Administration to investigate.
“The bottom line is the American people and Floridians deserve transparency,” said Congressman Michael Waltz.
Waltz and four other Republican congressmen in Florida are leading the charge.
“If there’s a reasonable explanation let’s hear it and if there needs to be accountability let’s see it,” said Waltz.
Most important, Waltz said, is determining who signed off on the application.
“And I would find it very difficult to believe that the senior leadership of the Florida Democratic Party didn’t approve this loan, know that it was going out,” said Waltz.
We’ve been asking for months, but the Democratic Party of Florida has so far refused to release the loan application.
The state’s highest ranking Democrat, Agriculture Commission Nikki Fried told us several weeks ago she’s satisfied with explanations given to her by the party.
“They returned the money and they have realized that that was a mistake to have applied for it to begin with,” said Fried.
Waltz said the public deserves to hear that explanation.
“It’s their money. It’s not her money,” said Waltz.
Financial records show the Democratic Party did pay back the loan it received.
Waltz argued that doesn’t undo any potential wrongdoing.
Lying on a PPP loan application is a felony carrying up to five years in prison and or a $250,000 fine.
We reached out to the Democratic Party of Florida for comment on this story and requested a copy of the original loan application.
We did not receive a response.