Will Obama, McCain, Dodd Return Contributions From AIG Employees?

Photo: Sen. Christopher Dodd, President Barack Obama

AIG employees kept doling out donations to politicians, including presidential candidate Barack Obama, after getting bailed out with federal funds last year, raising the question of whether those politicians will now return the money.

AIG executives gave more than $630,000 during the 2008 political cycle even as the company was falling apart

According to the Center for Responsive Politics, which tracks campaign finance reports, more than $120,000 of that money was donated after AIG received its first $85 billion in federal bailout funds in September. The company has since received a total of $170 billion in taxpayer cash to prevent its collapse.

Their generosity included more than $23,000 to Obama's campaign.

Both Obama and Republican presidential candidate John McCain raked in much larger sums from AIG earlier in the year. Obama collected a total of $130,000 from AIG in 2008, while McCain accepted a total of $59,499.

This raises two key questions: Was any bailout money used to make political contributions? And will the politicians who received AIG cash give the money back?

ABC News has asked the question of the big recipients of AIG cash on Capitol Hill, including Rep. Paul Kanjorski, D-Pa., the guy chairing today's AIG hearing. Kanjorski received $12,000 in AIG contributions during the 2008 political cycle.

AIG's CEO Edward Liddy said he imposed new rules when he took over the struggling insurance giant six months ago, banning further lobbying of politicians and ending political donations from AIG's two political action committees.

Records indicate that AIG's PACs stopped making donations, but contributions from AIG executives continued right up to the presidential election.

One suggestion: Perhaps the money could be paid back not to AIG but to the U.S. Treasury.

Here's the list of top AIG recipients for the 2008 campaign:

1. Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn., $103,100
2. Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., $101,332
3. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., $59,499
4. Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., $35,965
5. Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., $24,750
6. Former Gov. Mitt Romney, (R) Pres $20,850
7. Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del., $19,975
8. Rep. John Larson, D-Conn, $19,750
9. Sen. John Sununu, R-N.H., $18,500
10. Former Mayor Rudolph Giuliani (R) Pres $13,200
11. Rep. Paul Kanjorski, D-Pa., $12,000
12. Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., $11,000

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