O'Donnell scoffs at reports of investigation
December 30th, 2010
09:04 AM ET
3 years ago

O'Donnell scoffs at reports of investigation

Washington (CNN) - Republican Christine O'Donnell, who lost her Delaware Senate bid, is scoffing at reports the Justice Department and FBI have launched a criminal investigation into possible misuse of campaign funds, telling CNN Thursday she only learned of the apparent probe from media inquiries.

"I find it awfully suspicious, that if there is an investigation that the [Associated Press] was tipped off before we were tipped off or our lawyer or any other officials," O'Donnell said during an interview on American Morning. "And as we've looked into it, this is simply the same CREW complaint that is obviously politically motivated that's been circulating for the past couple of months."

Justice Department prosecutors and FBI agents have started the investigation, a source with knowledge of the probe confirmed to CNN. The source could not speak on the record because of the investigation is deemed sensitive. The source would not provide any further details and the FBI and Justice Department had no comment. News of the investigation was first reported by the Associated Press.

When O'Donnell ran in the Republican primary and in the general election campaign, she faced repeated questions about her finances, including the use of her home that doubled for a time as her campaign headquarters. She acknowledged using some campaign funds to help pay the rent but is adamant she did not nothing wrong.

"We rent a townhouse that we use for the campaign headquarters," O'Donnell told CNN Thursday. "And because of things like eggs being thrown at my home and my home being broken into and vandalized, I use that townhome as my legal residency, and I pay the campaign rent in order to do that. I give the campaign money to have that as my legal residency. Not the other way around. So these things are being taken out of context."

The former Delaware Senate candidate also attributed the rumors of impropriety to a disgruntled former campaign volunteer, David Keegan, who submitted an affidavit to watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics (CREW) alleging misuse of campaign funds in a previous O'Donnell Senate bid.

"Dave Keegan was a volunteer in 2008 so how did he know about anything in 2009?" O'Donnell responded. "We let him go because he gave so many people on the campaign the creeps. Since then, he's become obsessed for whatever reason with putting the charges out there."

CREW subsequently filed complaints with the Federal Elections Commission and the U.S. Attorney's Office in Delaware regarding O'Donnell's finances, asking for investigations of her alleged use of campaign funds for personal expenses.

Justice Department spokeswoman Laura Sweeney acknowledged to CNN that the U.S. Attorney's office in Delaware had agreed to review the initial complaint filed by CREW. However, Sweeney declined to say whether federal prosecutors and FBI agents had gone beyond the initial review.

In a statement issued Wednesday, O'Donnell also suggested the investigation was the work of Vice President Joe Biden, the former longtime senator from Delaware.

"Given that the King of the Delaware Political Establishment just so happens to be the Vice President of the most liberal Presidential administration in U.S. history, it is no surprise that misuse and abuse of the FBI would not be off the table," she said.

A spokesman for Biden's office had no comment on O'Donnell's allegation.

O'Donnell, who shocked Republicans with her surprise primary victory over Rep. Mike Castle last fall, also told CNN the investigation is evidence of the political establishment's ongoing vendetta against her.

"Keep in mind, that we upset the Delaware political establishment," she said. "And we beat their so-called untouchable incumbent. There's a vendetta to stop this movement in its tracks because if the citizen politicians continue to rise up and put the career politicians on notice, we are going to continue to put the political establishment on notice."

– CNN's Kevin Bohn and Alexander Mooney contributed to this report

soundoff (51 Responses)
  1. palintwit

    Sarah Palin's mini-me.

    December 30, 2010 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  2. Marcus

    So she's playing the 'victim' in this case. Rangel (for the Dems) and Cantor (for the GOPers) did try to play thir role too...
    Every lame politician likes to play this role when he/she is caught.

    December 30, 2010 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  3. JDD

    "I find it awfully suspicious, that if there is an investigation that the [Associated Press] was tipped off before we were tipped off or our lawyer or any other officials,"

    I think Ms.O'Donnell make a good point. This does seem to be a common pattern when the evidence and the case is weak at best, knowingly suspect at worst.

    December 30, 2010 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  4. Tam

    She doesn't have an education, a profession, is not qualified for any job (not even witchcraft, since she just "dabbled") - so what is she gonna do? Maybe Sarah can get her as an advisor?

    December 30, 2010 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  5. DIANA

    Admit it Christine, you're a crook just like your mentor – Sarah Palin. Thankfully, Deleware isn't as dumb as you thought they were.

    December 30, 2010 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  6. Justiec

    Ms. O'Donnell is as delusional as ever. The Tea Party would do well to distance themselves from her.

    December 30, 2010 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  7. Carol

    If she had no other source of income, how did she pay he bills?

    December 30, 2010 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  8. Steve

    Every time this woman opens her mouth, she embarrasses herself. Doesnt she have any friends that will tell her to just shut up already.

    December 30, 2010 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  9. Rick A

    I SO look forward to her posted scoffing from JAIL!

    December 30, 2010 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  10. GOP = Greed Over People

    "Given that the King of the Delaware Political Establishment just so happens to be the Vice President of the most liberal Presidential administration in U.S. history, it is no surprise that misuse and abuse of the FBI would not be off the table," she said

    Since understanding legal issues or any issue, for that matter, does not appear to be your strongest suit, I am no lawyer, but even I see a slander lawsuit on the behalf of VP Biden in the wording of that allegation, if you cannot back it up with facts.

    Of course, now I suppose now you need a definition of "facts"...

    December 30, 2010 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  11. Kevin

    Christine – You didn't HAVE a campaign in 2009. You don't get to charge your living expenses retroactively to your campaign... As if I needed any more evidence that O'Donnell is a dullard.

    December 30, 2010 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  12. Nick San Diego

    Hey, if you did nothing wrong, then don;t sweat it.The investigation will either prove you did or did not violate any laws., vendetta or not.

    December 30, 2010 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  13. Liars

    Hope she gets convicted and serves a lengthy sentence in Oz!

    December 30, 2010 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  14. MOUF

    her statements are always entertaining, hope she becomes a bigger politcal figure for pure giggles. Palin O'Donnel ticket would be must see TV

    December 30, 2010 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  15. Lynda/Minnesota

    Nice of CNN to give O'Donnell air time to list her grievances. Ought to be worth a few hundred thousand of donation dollars for her defense PAC. Wonder if O'Reilly had O'Donnell in mind when he recently quoted 'The Lord Helps Those Who Help Themselves'? Apparently O'Donnell has been helping herself to her political coffers for years. Ah, well, next on her agenda are all those street corners to be panhandled - a *I lie for donations* sign in hand ought to really tug at the TeaPer hearts and open up their wallets to O'Donnell big time.

    December 30, 2010 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  16. Chuck Anaheim, Ca

    What an absolute imbicile! Can't keep blaming everybody else for your mistakes ms witchypoo.

    December 30, 2010 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  17. sean

    " O'Donnell also suggested the investigation was the work of Vice President Joe Biden"

    seriously? the guy is VP, why would he bother with this loon? it's not like he has a ton of time to be all like "oh lemme screw up christine o'donnell hur hur hur"

    more proof that the poles of the political spectrum have one thing in common: they're all nuts.

    December 30, 2010 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  18. MBIowa

    Why is this news? Why does she continue to receive media attention? How about we wait until charges are actually filed? These political nutjobs would be less likely to run if they didn't get constant media attention. As a former journalist, I would like someone to explain to me how this is news – thanks to the 24-hour news cycle, it appears anything and everything is news to fill the time.

    December 30, 2010 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  19. P77

    What a glorified moron. With all of our attention that we so happily bestow on individuals like this, it's no wonder her ego has grown exponentially. THESE are the people that WE turn into CELEBRITY, America! Wake up! Ther are bigger issues at hand and more productive and giving and positive people to throw our attention toward other than crazed lunatics like Christine O'Donnell and Sarah Palin! WAKE UP!

    December 30, 2010 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  20. Proud member of "Global Zero"

    Christine O'Donnell, "MSM, look at me look at me!" Charges to be investigated...Christine O'Donnell. "MSM, don't look at me don't look at me, it is everyone else's fault.

    December 30, 2010 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  21. boocat

    The only "vendetta" on this dingbat is the "vendetta" against stupidity...

    December 30, 2010 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  22. Patrick from Minnesota

    I swear, the media cannot get enough of that buffoon. Same thing with her master Sarah Palin. Do these people honestly think a majority of their viewers even remotely care about these insomniacs? As I said before, honest reporting died with Walter Cronkite.

    December 30, 2010 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  23. speekers

    not surprised. You?

    December 30, 2010 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  24. Sgt, Joe

    Does anyone really care about this hysterical has been?

    December 30, 2010 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  25. Florida Joe

    So if there is no wrong doing you have nothing to worry about.....Of course the way you go through campaign managers and accountants and then they say that something is wrong? We'll see.............Nice Palin impression though saying that everyone is against you....poor you..........GO AWAY

    December 30, 2010 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
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