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Nominee to Lead US Media Agency Under Investigation

FILE - USAGM CEO nominee Michael Pack at his confirmation hearing, Sept. 19, 2019.

The top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee said Thursday the nonprofit organization run by President Donald Trump’s nominee to lead the federal agency with oversight of Voice of America is under investigation by the District of Columbia attorney general’s office.

New Jersey Sen. Bob Menendez said late Thursday the attorney general’s office is investigating whether Michael Pack’s use of funds from his nonprofit, Public Media Lab, was unlawful and whether he improperly used those funds to benefit himself.

The U.S. Agency for Global Media is the agency that oversees U.S. government broadcasting, including the Voice of America, among others.

Menendez said that since Pack's confirmation hearing in September, “Mr. Pack has refused to provide the Senate Foreign Relations Committee with documents it requested that get to the heart of the matter that the OAG (Office of Attorney General) is now investigating, or to correct false statements he made to the IRS.”

Menendez said he is urging the chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, Republican Jim Risch, to put the Pack nomination on hold.

There has been no response so far from Pack or the White House to the Menendez statement. VOA has asked for comment from Risch.

Trump nominated Pack to take over the USAGM nearly two years ago.