Va. Governor Ducks Questions On Thompson Money

MANASSAS, VA (WUSA9) -- Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe is pointedly refusing to take questions Thursday on the Jeffrey Thompson scandal.

McAuliffe's 2009 campaign took cash from the now convicted felon... And McAuliffe chaired Hillary Clinton's Presidential campaign, which benefited from a Thompson shadow campaign.

But McAuliffe walked out when I tried to ask him about it.

"Governor your 2009 campaign took 2500 dollars from Jeffrey Thompson?" I asked him. "Do you have any intention of returning that? Will you return that money sir?"

A spokeswoman for the governor says the setting was inappropriate and the governor was in a hurry.

McAuliffe was battling with Virginia Republicans over Medicaid funding at a Manassas health clinic, and clearly had no desire to answer questions about whether he had any connections with Thompson, the DC businessman who's now pleaded guilty to conspiring to corrupt both local and federal campaign.

While President Obama, Maryland Governor O'Malley, and DC Delegate Norton have all given back Thompson's contributions, Gov. McAuliffe has not.

"Thompson is looking to be one of the most dirty funding issues in politics, at least in this election cycle," says public policy professor Jeremy Mayer of George Mason University. "If I were advising Terry McAuliffe, I would say give the money back now, because you are going to give it back anyway."

McAuliffe is a close friend of the Clintons, He was Hillary Clinton's campaign chair in 2008. And Thompson admitted in court to running a $608,750 shadow campaign to help Hillary Clinton win the Democratic nomination.

"Governor, did you know anything about the shadow campaign for Hillary Clinton when you were chairman for the campaign?" before an elevator door closed in my face.

Prosecutors say there's no evidence Hillary Clinton knew anything about Thompson's shadow campaign. But that may not end it for McAuliffe. "He better watch himself," says Mayer, "because if this issue gets bigger, people will look to Terry McAuliffe, who is the Clinton's fund-raising guy, and say 'If he didn't know, why didn't he know?'"

US Attorney Ron Machen's investigation of the Presidential campaign is not over. And there is certainly the possibility he will release more information just as Hillary Clinton is gearing up to run again for President in 2016.


To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment