The reported FBI investigation into a House Republicans’ trip to Israel that included skinny dipping by Kansas Representative Kevin Yoder was not aimed at the trip itself but was merely part of a probe of New York Representative Michael Grimm and his supporters, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Citing an unnamed person familiar with the investigation, the Journal reported late Monday that the FBI learned of Yoder’s now-infamous naked swim while scrutinizing Grimm’s trip to Israel and a later trip to Cyprus.
The New York Times reported earlier this month that Grimm neglected to file appropriate paperwork about his visit to Cyprus, which was sponsored by the Cyprus Federation of America. A former Grimm fund-raiser was arrested and charged last week with lying on immigration documents. Grimm has not been charged with any crime and has denied wrongdoing.
Yoder’s skinny dipping was not relevant to the investigation, the Journal reported, but it has garnered national attention.
The first-term representative was one of more than 80 House members who visited Israel last summer on a fact-finding mission sponsored by the American Israel Education Foundation. Politico reported Sunday that after an evening that included drinking, a half dozen congressmen and some of their aides and family members went swimming in the Sea of Galilee.
While the rest of the swimmers remained fully or partly clothed, Yoder stripped naked and jumped into the sea.
In a statement to Politico, Yoder apologized for embarrassing colleagues and constituents, admitting that “regrettably I jumped into the water without a swimsuit.”