WestVirginiaRebel Posted October 9, 2012 Share Posted October 9, 2012 abc3340.com: JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Businesses affiliated with the husband of Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill have received almost $40 million in federal subsidies for low-income housing developments during her first five years in office, though it appears only fraction of that has made it to the family's bank accounts, according to an Associated Press analysis. McCaskill's Republican challenger, Rep. Todd Akin, says the federal payments should be a cause for concern among voters. He's attempting to portray the Democratic senator's family as a prime beneficiary of government largesse. "There is a conflict of interest and a breach of trust with the citizens of our state," Akin said in an interview with the AP. McCaskill campaign spokesman Caitlin Legacki called such assertions "flat-out wrong." There is no evidence that McCaskill personally routed the money to her husband's businesses. But she voted for some - and against other - bills that funded the federal housing and agriculture departments, which in turn provide subsidies to businesses with federal contracts to provide low-income housing. The AP reviewed five years' worth of federal personal financial disclosure statements filed by McCaskill, which list more than 300 "affordable housing" businesses in which her husband, Joseph Shepard, had at least a partial ownership during the time she has been in office. At least one-third of those businesses also appear to be listed as recipients of federal payments in an online government database that tracks spending. The firms affiliated with Shepard appear to have received about $39 million from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Rural Housing Service or the Department of Housing and Urban Development between 2007 - when McCaskill took office - and the end of 2011. According to McCaskill's financial reports, Shepard earned an income of between about $400,000 and $2.6 million from those businesses in the years in which they received government payments. Some of those businesses also rent non-subsidized housing units, and it's hard to know how much of that income came from private verses government sources, McCaskill's campaign said. McCaskill's campaign declined to make the senator available for an interview about the federal payments and - except for Legacki's brief statement that Akin's assertion was wrong - also declined to let campaign staff participate in an on-the-record interview. But the campaign offered a variety of reasons why the payments pose no conflict of interest, including the fact that McCaskill opposed some of the funding bills and that those she supported also included appropriations for a wide variety of government programs. ________ It's just business... Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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