Christine O’Donnell’s Ex-Campaign Manager Accused Her of Embezzling Donations, Said O’Donnell ‘Just Wanted to Make a Buck’

As we noted earlier, the announcement by the nonpartisan ethics group CREW that it will file a complaint on Monday charging Delaware’s GOP-Tea Party Senate candidate Christine O’Donnell with misappropriating campaign donations apparently struck a nerve. O’Donnell reneged on two invitations to appear on Sunday political shows, including — and this is telling — the GOP-friendly show on the Fox.

O’Donnell’s alleged financial corruption may be news to the rest of the country, but on Election Day, the Delaware Republican Party, no less, released an anti-O’Donnell robocall in which Kristin Murray, O’Donnell’s former campaign manager accused O’Donnell of using campaign donations to pay personal expenses and of incompetent financial management that left bills unpaid and the campaign thousands of dollars in debt.

Transcript:

KRISTIN MURRAY: This is Kristin Murray. In 2008, I was the campaign manager for Senate candidate Christine O’Donnell. I got into politics because I believe in conservative values and wanted to make a difference. But I was shocked to learn that O’Donnell is no conservative.

You see, this is her third Senate race in five years. As O’Donnell’s manager, I found out she was living on campaign donations — using them for rent and personal expenses, while leaving her workers unpaid and piling up thousands in debt.

She wasn’t concerned about conservative causes. O’Donnell just wanted to make a buck. That’s why I left and why I won’t trust O’Donnell with my hard-earned tax dollars.

This ad has been paid for by the Delaware Republican party, www.delawaregop.com. Not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.

As Melanie Sloan, executive director of CREW, said in a release last week, “Ms. O’Donnell has had no discernible job for several years, and instead has lived the life of a professional candidate, using the generosity of her campaign donors for her support … That may just be freeloading to most people, but it’s embezzlement for a federal candidate.”

In the robocall, Murray suggests that O’Donnell’s financial shenanigans somehow make her “no conservative.” This is laughable, of course. Based on the right wing’s abysmal track record in managing the economy, O’Donnell’s financial incompetence and malfeasance make her a textbook conservative.

Christine O’Donnell Abruptly Cancels Fox Appearance After CREW Says It Will File Complaint Charging She Embezzled Donations

Why would a media savvy candidate like Christine O’Donnell blow off a coveted opportunity to appear on the Sunday political shows? Could it be because her lawyers warned her against risking incriminating herself by discussing on-air an ethics watchdog group’s charge that she embezzled campaign funds?

Christine O'Donnell speaking a Christian political rally after filing of embezzlement complaint was announced
Christine O'Donnell speaking a Christian political rally after filing of embezzlement complaint was announced
On CNN Friday night, CREW, the nonpartisan Washington ethics watchdog group, announced it will file a complaint with the Federal Elections Commission on Monday charging that Delaware’s new Republican U.S. Senate nominee Christine O’Donnell lied on forms she filed when she launched her candidacy and misappropriated $20,000 in campaign funds from two prior failed runs for the Senate.

O’Donnell became the right wing’s latest overnight celebrity when she defeated Rep. Mike Castle in Delaware’s Republican primary on Sept. 14. She promotes herself as a Christian whose morality forbids her from lying. “A lie, whether it be a lie or an exaggeration, is disrespect to whoever you’re exaggerating or lying to, because it’s not respecting reality,” she said in a televised exchange years ago. When asked if her adherence to the truth would have prevented her from lying to protect Jewish families who were hiding from Nazis during World War II, she demurred. “You never have to practice deception,” she said. “God always provides a way out.” (In other words, “no.”)

The funds in question were donated to her two previous Senate campaigns, first in 2006, when she came in third out of three in the Republican primary, and then in 2008, when she won the GOP nomination but was soundly defeated by Sen. Joe Biden in the general election.

On AC360 Friday night, CREW Executive Director Melanie Sloan told Anderson Cooper that witnesses had come forward who had firsthand knowledge that O’Donnell had illegally put donated funds to personal use in 2009 and early 2010 when she was not an active candidate for any office:

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