AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — As U.S. Rep. Ronny Jackson – Texas District 13 continues to be under investigation by the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Ethics, more information has been released on what caused this investigation.

According to previous reports by MyHighPlains.com, the committee announced the extension of the investigation into Jackson, something that was transmitted to the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Ethics by the Office of Congressional Ethics in late December 2021. In a statement provided to MyHighPlains.com at the time, Jackson’s office said that Jackson has cooperated with the Office of Congressional Ethics by providing “detailed explanations regarding questions they had about his campaign finance report.”

Officials from Jackson’s office told MyHighPlains.com that the complaint was brought forward to the Office of Congressional Ethics regarding charges from Jackson’s campaign account, titled “Texans for Ronny Jackson,” to the Amarillo Club, a members-only business club located in downtown Amarillo.

According to data from the Federal Election Commission, the campaign has reported 17 charges at the Amarillo Club from October 2020 through March 2022, totaling more than $6,700. These charges included:

  • Membership Fees – $649.50 on 10/19/20
  • Membership Fees – $175.37 on 11/11/20
  • Food/Beverage – $275.37 on 1/11/21
  • Food/Beverage – $175.37 on 2/9/21
  • Food/Beverage – $175.37 on 3/11/21
  • Dues – $175.37 on 4/12/21
  • Dues – $175.37 on 5/11/21
  • Food/Beverage – $3,297.43 on 6/14/21
  • Membership Food/Beverage – $281.87 on 7/12/21
  • Membership Food/Beverage – $175.37 on 8/11/21
  • Membership Food/Beverage – $175.37 on 9/13/21
  • Registration Fees – $175.37 on 10/12/21
  • Registration Fees – $175.37 on 11/15/21
  • Registration Fees – $175.37 on 12/13/21
  • Food/Beverage – $175.36 on 1/12/22
  • Food/Beverage – $175.36 on 2/10/22
  • Food/Beverage – $175.36 on 3/09/22

According to its website, the Amarillo Club started as a “Business Men Club” in 1947, growing into a place where events can be hosted on the 30th and 31st floors of the FirstBank Southwest Tower in downtown Amarillo. The website states that there are more than 850 members of the club.

According to the FEC’s website, various charges to a country club, health club, recreational facility or other nonpolitical organization are not allowed uses for campaign finance dollars unless “they are part of the costs of a specific fundraising event that takes place on the organization’s premises.”

In a statement provided to MyHighPlains.com from Casey Nelson, the spokesperson for Jackson’s campaign, she stressed that the charges were allowed because they were for campaign matters.

“These costs are strictly associated with campaign and fundraising events,” Nelson said in the statement. “Rep. Jackson, nor any member of his family, have ever been to the Amarillo Club for personal use.”

Another official from Jackson’s office said that Jackson provided receipts for each of the instances listed at the Amarillo Club and had explanations for all of the charges, using them for events and matters that are within the bounds of proper expenditures of campaign finance dollars.

The other official stressed that this is a normal way for politicians to use campaign funds, providing an example of lawmakers using the Capitol Hill Club in Washington D.C. for various campaign events, as well as political and fundraising activities. Lawmakers are allowed to spend campaign money on memberships to clubs like the Amarillo Club if the lawmakers do not use the membership for personal matters as well as if the cost of renting a room at the location to conduct a campaign-related event is above the cost of the membership to the club.

The other official from Jackson’s office expects this matter to be dismissed. According to previous reports, officials from the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Ethics said it will announce its course of action in this matter on or before May 23.

When asked, officials with the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Ethics had no comment regarding this story. MyHighPlains.com has also reached out to the Office of Congressional Ethics and has not heard back as of this writing.