Corzine – Can’t Pass The Smell Test
Republicans are questioning a $37,000 political donation made to Bergen County Democrats by the mother of U.S. Sen. Jon Corzine, who is also running for governor of New Jersey.
Corzine's mother, Nancy, an 89-year-old retired school teacher who lives in Oak Park, Ill., made the donation on Oct. 14 to the Bergen County Democratic Organization. The amount was the maximum allowed by law.
Tom Wilson, chairman of the state Republican Committee, accused Corzine of giving the money to his mother so that it could be donated. "You can't give someone else money and then have them contribute it in their name," Wilson said. "It is shameful that Mr. Corzine has dragged his mother into his political Ponzi scheme."
Wilson said it is incumbent on Corzine to provide an accounting of where the money came from. If not, Wilson said, the Republican Committee will pursue "whatever action is necessary," including raising the issue with the Election Law Enforcement Commission.
Steve Adamske, a Corzine spokesman, said Nancy Corzine made the contribution on her own and made the proper disclosures. "This is not something we hide from," Adamske said. "She makes contributions, Jon Corzine makes contributions. It's part of the progressive values they believe in. "In politics you don't need to go around attacking someone's family," Adamske said. "If she wants to make a contribution that's her free will."
Update: It gets better (or worse). Newsday has added the following information to their original report.
Nancy Corzine, reached by telephone at her home in Illinois by The Record of Bergen County, declined to answer questions. "I don't like these elections and stuff," she told the newspaper. "I have nothing else to say."
Mrs. Corzine also made contributions to Senate candidates across the country while her son was chairman of the Democratic Senatorial Committee, the newspaper reported. Beginning in December 2003, Nancy Corzine contributed $44,000 to Senate candidates including Tom Daschle of South Dakota, Tony Knowles of Alaska and Ken Salazar of Colorado, according to federal campaign finance reports.