One day after The Washington Times reported that a key Democratic fundraising group was holding onto $100,000 from disgraced financier Bernard Madoff, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee decided to donate the money to his victims.
"We're reviewing this internally, and decided to give the money to the trustee for distribution to the victims," DSCC spokesman Eric Schultz told Roll Call on Thursday.
The Washington Times reported Wednesday the DSCC had been given four $25,000 donations by Madoff from 2005 to 2008. Mr. Schultz told The Times for Wednesday's report that the group had not returned the money or donated it to charity.
The last donation was made in September 2008, before Madoff's fraud was exposed. Still, other Washington politicos have rushed to shed Madoff money since his $64 billion Ponzi scheme collapsed in December and the financier became a household name.
A Center for Responsive Politics analysis concluded that Democrats were the overwhelming beneficiaries - 88 percent - of the $238,200 that Madoff and his wife, Ruth, gave to federal candidates, parties and committees since 1991.
Such high-profile Democrats as Sens. Charles E. Schumer of New York, Ron Wyden of Oregon and Christopher J. Dodd of Connecticut have given thousands of Madoff-tainted dollars to Madoff victim funds or humanitarian causes in recent months. Just nine Republican candidates - none currently in office - received a combined $11,400 from the Madoffs.