Beshear waiting on audit before donating tainted campaign funds

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FRANKFORT, Ky. – Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear said he’s waiting on an audit by the Kentucky Registry of Election Finance to make good on a promise he made a year ago to donate campaign funds he received from a former top aide now serving time on bribery charges.

“When I made that vow I made it 100 percent,” said Beshear.

Timothy M. Longmeyer, a one-time deputy attorney general in Beshear’s office, resigned in April 2016, days before federal bribery charges were announced. He is currently serving 70 months in prison and a five-year concurrent sentence on state charges of misusing confidential information.

Longmeyer admitted in federal court that while serving in the administration of then-Governor Steve Beshear, he had two companies administering the state employee health insurance plan hire a consulting firm. That firm kicked back more than $200,000 to Longmeyer, much of which was used for illegal campaign contributions to democratic candidates and causes.

Among Longmeyer’s contributions, according to the Kentucky Registry of Election Finance, was $1,000 to Andy Beshear’s campaign for attorney general, in both the 2015 primary and general elections.

On April 19, 2016, the attorney general said he would donate that money to Common Cause, a campaign watchdog group.

Beshear repeated his earlier stance on the issue during an interview on Wednesday with Kentucky Today.

“I said one year ago that when the audit by the Kentucky Registry of Election Finance is complete, I would contribute not just any money that Longmeyer contributed, I would contribute every remaining dollar, after any action by KREF to Common Cause,” Beshear said.

“I would have been happy to provide every remaining dollar six or eight months ago,” the attorney general said.

Beshear said he is unsure exactly how much money that will be depending on any fees assessed by the Registry, but his contribution could be at least double what Longmeyer, or members his family may have contributed.

Six members of the Longmeyer family contributed at least $1,000 to Andy Beshear’s campaign, according to Registry online records.

“Common Cause does good work holding public officials accountable and making sure there’s transparency in government. I believe this donation will be very helpful for them to continue to engage in that fight, which I fully support,” Beshear said.

Longmeyer, who was recently disbarred by the Kentucky Supreme Court, began serving his prison term in January of this year.

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