Local News

Perdue Campaign to Return Contributions to Fayetteville Teens

Posted January 31, 2007 5:53 p.m. EST
Updated January 31, 2007 7:04 p.m. EST

— Candidates are already starting to stock their campaign war chests for next year's fight for the North Carolina governorship. But with 21 months until Election Day, one high-profile hopeful faces questions about a series of contributions from teenagers.

Beverly Perdue has raised about $2.5 million so far for her expected run for governor. She brought in about $1 million of that in the last half of 2006.

A closer look at Perdue's most recent campaign finance report shows a healthy contribution from a Fayetteville family.

On Oct. 9, Dr. Sheryl Jordan, a radiologist, donated the individual maximum of $4,000. On the same day, her three sons -- Ben, Sam, and Zane -- each gave the same $4,000 amounts. According to public documents, the teens range in age from 13 to 18 years old.

North Carolina law puts no age restriction on individuals who make political contributions. But the contributor must use his or her own money, and donating in the name of another person is illegal.

It's still unclear whether any of these contributions crossed the line. By law, the Perdue campaign is not liable for illegal campaign contributions of that sort.

But campaign officials said they won’t take any chances. In a statement Wednesday afternoon, the officials thanked WRAL for bringing the issue to their attention.

“We're reviewing our finance report and returning any checks from people under the age of 18. And beginning (Wednesday), we are implementing a policy not to accept checks from people under 18,” Perdue campaign spokesman Peter Reichard said in the statement. “This new policy goes beyond the requirements of the law."