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RNC Begins An Internal Review Of Past Donations

Democrats say it's not enough

By Brooks Jackson/CNN


WASHINGTON (May 9) -- The Republican National Committee says its own lawyers will review all contributions of $5,000 or more received in the last 3 1/2 years to ensure that they are legal.

The RNC said the review is "to double-check the actual source of the funds." Democrats called the internal review "meaningless" and said it should be conducted by an independent group and should go back to 1991, when illegal donations were made.

Republicans are giving back $122,400 given illegally by a Hong Kong corporation to the party through a U.S. subsidiary in 1991, 1992, 1993 and 1994.

Florida Republicans said Friday they also will "probably" return another $25,000 contribution to the same company, Young Brothers Development U.S.A., which gave it to the state party in 1991.


Former RNC chairman Rich Richards, now president of Young Brothers of Florida, says the party should return an additional $500,000 to the company, Young Brothers Development. He was quoted in Friday's Boston Globe as saying, "I'd like to see them do it. I think they should."

That is money that Young Brothers paid to retire debts run up by another GOP chairman, Haley Barbour, at a nonprofit group called the National Policy Forum. But the RNC says the money did not go to the national party.

Young Brothers of Florida is 100 percent owned by a Hong Kong corporation that supplied all the money in question.

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