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Obama Campaign, DNC Returns Corzine Contributions

Friday, December 23, 2011

Jon Corzine, former CEO of MF Global, testifies before the House Agriculture Committee about the company's bankruptcy of MF Global on Capitol Hill in Washington on December 8, 2011. Jon Corzine, former CEO of MF Global, testifies on Capitol Hill. (Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images)

President Barack Obama's campaign and the Democratic National Committee have returned more than $70,000 in campaign contributions from New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine following the collapse of MF Global, Corzine's financial firm, officials said Friday.

Obama's campaign and the DNC returned contributions of $35,800 from Corzine and his wife, Sharon Elghanayan, said Democratic officials who spoke on condition of anonymity. They were not authorized to speak publicly.

Corzine was among Obama's top fundraisers, raising at least $500,000 for Obama's re-election campaign since April, according to records released by the campaign. The former Goldman Sachs chief held a fundraiser for the president last April and was considered a main Obama emissary to Wall Street.

One of the Democratic officials said the campaign and DNC would evaluate whether to return donations from other MF Global employees on a case-by-case basis.

MF Global filed for bankruptcy protection on Oct. 31 after a disastrous bet on European debt sparked fear among investors and trading partners. It was the eighth-largest U.S. bankruptcy and the largest on Wall Street since the 2008 collapse of Lehman Bros.

About $1.2 billion was found to be missing from client accounts when the securities firm failed, with much of the missing money belonging to farmers, ranchers and other business owners who used MF Global to reduce their risks from fluctuating prices of commodities such as corn and wheat. The FBI and federal regulators are investigating MF Global.

Corzine, who also is a former U.S. senator, told congressional panels earlier this month that he didn't know any customer money was missing until the day before MF Global collapsed.

Bloomberg News was first to report the returned campaign contributions.

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Comments [2]

MartyBrod from Zuccotti Park

Nobel winning economists George Akerlof and Joseph Stiglitz as well as William Black, James Galbraith, et al have repeated many times, we cannot solve the economic crisis unless we throw criminals who committed fraud in jail. Obama and his Justice Department have been derelict if not complicit in looking the other way while taking campaign money from these criminals.
Corzine and a couple of inside traders is not the real problem, Obama is.

Dec. 27 2011 06:38 PM
antonia Gilligan from Emerson, NJ

The return of the contribution is a sham. First off Jon Corzine had the President over to his Upper East Side palace. The President had an intimate dinner with approximately 20 people who paid $38,500 each to be there. At least 3 other MF Global executives were there. The Obama Administration did not return their potentially ill gotten money. Recall MF Global has "lost" S1.2 billion of customer funds. Per Mr. Duffy, a senior MF Global executive, who testified to Congress that Mr Corzine ordered the transfer of customer funds to defend MF Global's corporate account. Why wasn't all of the money returned since Mr Corzine and MF Global have violated Federal Banking and Commodity rules? Why would the president mess with a potential future felon? He knows that Mr Corzine will never be indicted because the D o J SEC and other regulators have never gone after these guys. Because they write the checks for the mother milk of politics, CASH!

Antonia Gilligan

We have the best government Wall Street can buy!

Please recall that Mr Corzine has been a major "bundler of contributions", to the tune of millions. Will Obama refuse to take money from the tainted Wall Street Baron? I doubt It and I voted for. What a disappointment, we are a country ruled by men and not by laws. American has harsh penalties for many crimes but the 1% always manipulate their way out, Bernie Madoff not withstanding.

Why hasn't anyone gone to jail for killing the mortgage market? How many Congressmen got "Friends of Angelo" hone loans at very low interest rates?

But hey with Congress aggressively doing insider trading and the President sucking up to Goldman Sachs (His largest corporate contributor and he hasn't given them any money back ) there is no chance that any of these guys will be indicted much less punished.

Dec. 27 2011 12:20 PM

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