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POLITICAL NOTEBOOK: Kingston returns campaign funds tied to Gwinnett fundraiser

A snafu over a Gwinnett County fundraiser caused Jack Kingston to return $80,000 from his U.S. Senate campaign.

David Perdue, who will face off against Kingston in a Republican primary runoff last month, has questioned the contributions associated with Khalid Satary, a felon facing deportation proceedings.

According to reports, a federal investigation is looking into allegations that Satary’s son Jordan, who is 19, paid employees bonuses with the understanding the money would be donated to Kingston.

“The Satarys took extreme measures to funnel excessive money to the Kingston campaign, and the congressman has taken great pains to cover it up. What did Satary want Congressman Kingston’s help in doing? Did he want the congressman’s help in stopping the deportation? It wouldn’t be the first time Kingston intervened with federal officials on a felon’s behalf,” a press release from Perdue’s campaign said.

Kingston has not been accused of wrongdoing in the incident, which involved a Dec. 6 fundraiser at Chateau Elan.

“Our review of this matter confirms that we are in full compliance with the law and federal regulations When additional external factors outside of our control were brought to our attention, we decided to return funds associated with the event out of an abundance of caution,” said Kingston campaign spokesman Chris Crawford.

“This is another desperate attempt by David Perdue to distract Georgians from his liberal record of ‘hav[ing] no problem’ with Common Core, supporting tax increases, and lining his own pockets with President Obama’s stimulus. His campaign is out of ideas and grasping at straws,” Crawford added.

Perdue also took umbrage with Kingston’s campaign and a super PAC for saying he never advocated for a tax increase, saying the Savannah congressman has talked about closing tax loopholes and tax reform.

“Congressman Kingston’s 22 years of liberal spending in Washington have added over $13 trillion to our national debt, and he is the only one in this race that ever suggested we might need to increase taxes to pay for it,” said Perdue, who has been criticized for talking about raising government revenues, although he said he never suggested that would come from a tax increase. “It’s just like a career politician to spread lies in an attempt to distract attention from his own record of fiscal irresponsibility.”

Political Notebook appears in the Thursday and Sunday editions of the Gwinnett Daily Post.

Camie Young can be reached via email at camie.young@gwinnettdailypost.com.

For archived columns, go to www.gwinnettdailypost.com/politics.