The FBI is investigating successful talking head and failed Senate candidate Christine O'Donnell for allegedly using campaign cash to pay for personal expenses, the Associated Press reports. Two federal prosecutors and two FBI agents are working on the case, which hasn't been brought before a grand jury, following a complaint filed by the watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics.
O'Donnell raised $7.3 million in her campaign--more than any other in Delaware history--after an endorsement from Sarah Palin drew massive national attention. O'Donnell's campaign has said she hasn't done anything wrong, but that the candidate did use campaign funds to pay her rent because her home served as her campaign headquarters. Federal law says that's not okay.
Ex-staffer David Keegan said in 2008 that O'Donnell seemed to have no income other than campaign donations, which financed meals, gas, and a round of bowling.
Outside the Beltway's Doug Mataconis--no particular fan of O'Donnell--notes, "I first took note of the allegations against O’Donnell before the September 14th Delaware primary when it became apparent that neither the Tea Party Express nor Sarah Palin had bother to vet O’Donnell on the issue prior to endorsing her. It wasn’t until after she defeated Mike Castle, though, that the details of just how fishy her campaign spending in 2006 and 2008 had been came out." Once the allegations surfaced, "instead of answering questions, O'Donnell dodged them and generally adopted the Sarah Palin/Sharron Angle/Joe Miller strategy of dodging hard questions and only appearing on 'friendly' media outlets like Fox News Channel. And her supporters accepted it without question."