Claire McCaskill’s husband, Joseph Shepard, obtained over $20 million in federal stimulus funds that benefited his real estate projects. In the period in which this happened, McCaskill had influence over federal policy that directly affected those proceedings.
Last Thursday, the National Legal and Policy Center (NLPC) released a report that revealed the truth that the Associated Press (AP) had painted in a very different fashion. The story in the Associated Press said that:
...businesses affiliated with the husband of Senator Claire McCaskill have received almost $40 million in federal subsidies for low-income housing developments during her first five years in office…
But the NLPC analysis showed more than $20 million in financial benefits from the federal stimulus funds went to real estate projects associated with Shephard, and all of the money went to projects different than those identified by the Associated Press story.
The AP study only focused on federal subsidies going to entities listed on Financial Disclosure Reports filed by McCaskill. NLPC went farther, examining voluminous public records involving the Missouri Tax Credit Fund, L.P. (MTCF), a business listed as an asset by Senator McCaskill on her reports. Not one of the six real estate projects identified by NLPC as receiving over $20 million in federal stimulus funds were listed on McCaskill’s Financial Disclosure Reports or mentioned by the AP.
And McCaskill was centrally involved in passing the stimulus bill. She spoke in favor of it on the Senate floor, issued press statements supporting it, supported amendments, and voted for it.
She even inadvertently referred to her ill-gotten gains in a press statement celebrating the stimulus on April 20, 2009:
U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill wants Missourians to know about all the ways the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act will help put a little extra cash in their pockets over the coming months and during next year's tax season.
While Missourians and other Americans struggled to put food on the table, McCaskill and her husband enriched themselves on the taxpayer dole.