A lawsuit filed in federal court in California reportedly accuses former Obama administration Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis of accepting free private jet flights, paid for by a powerful local union, during her confirmation and without disclosing the flights as in-kind gifts as required by law. The lawsuit is reportedy a RICO claim filed by union members alleging corruption by leaders of Local 12 of the International Union of Operating Engineers.
At the time of her confirmation in 2009, Solis, then a U.S. Representative, was controversial because of her close ties to unions and her advocacy on behalf of “card check,” euphemistically known as the Employee Free Choice Act. Card check would end the secret ballot in elections to form a union, and would allow unions to obtain a majority in their favor by obtaining–or, critics say, compelling–members to sign authorization cards.
According to Randy Economy and Brian Hews of the Hews Media Group-Community News, who broke the story Monday, the new lawsuit claims that Solis “was provided thousands of dollars worth of free private jet travel without declaring the trips on the federal government required forms.” She flew, according to Economy and Hews, on the union’s Cessna Citation XL Jet and that she did not report the flights to the U.S. House.
Solis is not named as a defendant in the lawsuit, though she is apparently discussed at length. Union leaders allegedly boasted that “we finally have a friend in the Department of Labor” and encouraged others to make “investments” in powerful political figures. Solis is currently running for a seat on the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors. Breitbart News has reached out to Solis for comment on the allegations.