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Clinton Campaign Will Return Tainted Donations

Democratic Sen. Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign said it will return $850,000 in donations raised by Democratic fundraiser Norman Hsu. Hsu is under federal investigation for violating election laws.

Sen. Clinton (D-NY), had previously planned only to give to charity $23,000 she received from Hsu for her presidential and senatorial campaigns and to her political action committee, HillPac.

The FBI is investigating whether Hsu paid so-called straw donors to send campaign contributions to Clinton and other candidates, a law enforcement official said Monday.

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"In light of recent events and allegations that Mr. Norman Hsu engaged in an illegal investment scheme, we have decided out of an abundance of caution to return the money he raised for our campaign," Clinton spokesman Howard Wolfson said in a statement Monday. "An estimated 260 donors this week will receive refunds totaling approximately $850,000 from the campaign."

Wolfson said that the Clinton campaign also will vigorously review its fundraisers, including thorough criminal background checks, in the future.

"In any instances where a source of a bundler's income is in question, the campaign will take affirmative steps to verify its origin," he said.

The amount that the campaign identified as raised by Hsu would make him one of her top fundraisers. During the first six months of this year, her presidential campaign raised $52 million from individual contributors, second to Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL), who raised $58.5 million.

From NPR reports and the Associated Press

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