Democratic Senator Pledges to Return Tony Podesta’s Campaign Donations

WASHINGTON, DC -- NOVEMBER 9: Former Clinton White House Chief of Staff, John Podesta, being interviewed for Discovery Channel's, 'The President's Gatekeepers,' November 9, 2012, in Washington, D.C. (Photo by David Hume Kennerly/Getty Images)
David Hume Kennerly/Getty Images

Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-IN) is pledging to return $2,000 worth of donations from Democratic lobbyist Tony Podesta, who is reportedly under investigation by Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

Donnelly, who is one of seven Democratic senators who accepted Podesta’s contributions for their 2018 campaigns, told WXIN that he would be “more than happy to return” the lobbyist’s donation.

The Indiana senator said he would return the donation after one of his GOP challengers for the 2018 Senate election, Rep. Todd Rokita (R-IN), criticized him for taking “dirty campaign cash.”

“This is just another example of Mexico Joe only doing the right thing after being caught,” said Rokita spokesman Nathan Brand. “First, it was thousands of dollars of investments in his family’s company outsourcing jobs to Mexico. Now, it is dirty campaign cash from Democrat super-lobbyist Tony Podesta.”

FEC filings show that Podesta also donated to Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO), Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND), Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV), and Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT).

Podesta resigned from his firm The Podesta Group October 30 after news outlets reported that Mueller had been investigating the firm.

Mueller had been looking at the firm’s lobbying activities for a pro-Russian Ukrainian political party organized by former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort.

Other top officials at the Podesta Group also submitted their resignations. Podesta Group CEO Kimberly Fritts announced Thursday that she was resigning from the firm to start her own group.


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