ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Future of Johnson campaign war chest unknown

SIOUX FALLS (AP) -- While U.S. Sen. Tim Johnson has decided not to run for another term in Congress, he has not decided what to do with the money he raised for a possible new campaign.

Tim Johnson
Tim Johnson

SIOUX FALLS (AP) -- While U.S. Sen. Tim Johnson has decided not to run for another term in Congress, he has not decided what to do with the money he raised for a possible new campaign.

The 66-year-old South Dakota Democrat announced last month that he will retire at the end of this third Senate term next year. His campaign war chest has more than $1.2 million, according to the Argus Leader newspaper.

Federal Election Commission rules limit how candidates can spend their campaign money, even if they decide not run for office. For example, they can't use it for personal spending, and the amount they can give to other candidates is limited.

There are many other options for Johnson, however, such as giving the money to charity or to the Democratic Party.

Chief of Staff Drey Samuelson said Johnson has plenty of time to decide what to do with the money "and feels no particular urgency to make a decision right now."

ADVERTISEMENT

Ben Nesselhuf, chairman of the South Dakota Democratic Party, said he has not been pressing Johnson to give money to the state party.

"That's the senator's money, and he can decide on his own what he'd like to do with it," Nesselhuf said. "Of course, we are happy every time we get a contribution. But I am putting no pressure on the senator to write us a check."

Craig Lawrence, chairman of the South Dakota Republican Party, said Johnson's money "would certainly be a jump start for whoever he chooses to give the money to."

"I doubt that the people who gave (Johnson money) gave with that intent, but it's his discretion to choose what to do with the money," Lawrence said.

Johnson, chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, suffered a brain hemorrhage in 2006 but later returned to the Senate. He has recovered significantly, but his speech remains compromised and he sometimes uses a motorized scooter.

Related Topics: ELECTION 2014FINANCE
What To Read Next
Lawmakers have said it is likely only one is affordable at this time without cutting programs or adding other taxes or revenue streams
Members Only
Although Mitchell's rates would be increase, the proposed equitable rate structure could lessen the increased costs for residential customers' water and sewer bills.
“We see that when things happen in the coastal areas, a few years later, they start trending toward the Midwest,” said Rep. Ben Krohmer, serving his first term in the House.
“This is sensationalism at its finest, and it does not deserve to be heard in our state capitol,” Rep. Erin Healy, a Democrat and one of 10 votes against the bill in the 70-person chamber, said.