Report: Former Top Ensign Aide Subpoenaed By Ethics Committee

Sen. John Ensign’s (R-NV) former chief of staff, Mike Slanker, has reportedly been subpoenaed by the Senate Ethics Committee in connection with a probe into Ensign’s affair and subsequent severance payments.

Slanker has been a consultant to Connecticut senatorial candidate Linda McMahon’s campaign. A spokesman for the campaign confirmed to the Hartford Courant that Slanker received the subpoena.

As we reported last week, the Senate Ethics Committee has begun to send out subpoenas to key players in the scandal — a sign that the probe is heating up.

Slanker had worked on Ensign’s campaign and was the political director for the National Republican Senatorial Committee when Ensign was its chair.He was intimately involved in the senator’s scandal. After a meeting with Ensign, Slanker hired Doug Hampton, an ex-staffer and husband of Ensign’s girlfriend whom Ensign had paid a hefty severance to, to work at his November, Inc., political consulting firm. Hampton struggled to find colleagues, and the gig only lasted a few months.

But Ensign had apparently lied to Slanker, telling him Hampton needed a job in Las Vegas rather than Washington because his wife was ill. He didn’t mention the affair, but Slanker found out about it from Ensign’s wife.