Longtime Rand Paul Aide Charged in Campaign-Payment Coverup
A longtime aide to Republican presidential candidate Rand Paul was indicted Wednesday on federal charges over payments allegedly intended to secure an endorsement for Ron Paul’s 2012 presidential campaign.
Jesse Benton, who now leads the super PAC backing the Kentucky senator’s presidential bid, was indicted along with two others who worked with him on Ron Paul’s 2012 campaign.
Federal prosecutors allege that in 2011, Mr. Benton, along with John Tate, who is now president of Rand Paul’s super PAC, and Dimitrios Kesari, who served as deputy national campaign manager on Ron Paul’s 2012 campaign, arranged to pay then-Republican Iowa state Sen. Kent Sorenson more than $70,000 to shift his support from then-Rep. Michele Bachmann to Ron Paul, Rand Paul’s father.
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The alleged wrongdoing happened before Messrs. Benton and Tate joined Rand Paul’s super PAC. Prosecutors said the staffers concealed the payments from Ron Paul.