How Much Did an Accused Political Fixer Raise for Obama?
ABC review finds an additional $100,000 in Obama contributions linked to Rezko.
Jan. 25, 2008— -- Months after reporters started asking Sen. Barack Obama to account for contributions raised by longtime friend and donor Antoin "Tony" Rezko, questions remain about the full extent of the accused Illinois political fixer's role as a patron of Obama's political career.
"We have returned any money that we know was associated to Mr. Rezko," Obama told Diane Sawyer on Wednesday morning during an appearance on "Good Morning America." "That is something that if there's additional information we don't know about, we'd be happy to return the money."
The Obama campaign says it has given away more than $85,000 in Rezko-linked contributions since Rezko was indicted on federal fraud and extortion charges in the fall of 2006.
An ABCNews.com review, however, has identified an additional $100,000 in contributions made to Obama from Rezko's associates that have not been returned, including $19,500 in contributions from Rezko's wife and employees of Rezko's business enterprises. The ABCNews.com review includes individuals who have been linked to Rezko in news reports, court documents and public records.
Other news organizations have reviewed Obama's campaign finance records and have also found Rezko-linked contributions that are more than double what the campaign has publicly acknowledged. The Chicago Sun-Times, which published its review last June, found that "Obama has collected at least $168,308 from Rezko and his circle," and earlier this week the Los Angeles Times reported that it had found that Rezko and his associates had given "Obama more than $200,000 in donations since 1995."
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