Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo appears to have used a taxpayer-funded emergency State Department fund, the K Fund, to throw lavish events, raising serious questions around his potential misuse of taxpayer dollars to boost his own political profile. CREW is suing the State Department and the State Department Office of Inspector General for their failure to turn over a full accounting of K Fund expenditures as well as records about IG investigations into Pompeo.
The K Fund, officially known as the Emergencies in the Diplomatic and Consular Service appropriation, is supposed to be “used to meet unforeseen emergency requirements in the conduct of foreign affairs, including evacuations of personnel and their families overseas,” as well as “urgent medical and travel expenses related to natural disasters or terrorist incidents; and other authorized activities that further the realization of foreign policy objectives.”
But Pompeo’s apparent use of the K Fund to throw lavish parties doesn’t seem to fit that intended purpose. Pompeo routinely used the K Fund to bankroll his lavish “Madison Dinners,” a series of extravagant events which he faced investigation for over misuse of funds. The Inspector General looking into Pompeo was fired before he was able to finish his investigation. To give an idea of the scale of these expenditures, CREW found that Pompeo had spent as much as $10,000 for 400 engraved pens as party favors for guests and more than $40,000 on the dinners generally. In addition to the lavish nature of these events, the dinners gained notoriety after reports indicated that only 14% of guests invited were diplomats or foreign officials, with conservative talking heads and Republican donors featuring prominently on the guest list.
CREW previously requested records of K Fund audits, which are mandated by the State Department, but to date has received no records. Taxpayers deserve to know the extent of Pompeo’s grift and specifically, how much of their money went to funding his luxurious political events.