« Ryan offers refunds to contributors | Main | CFI analysis of campaign reports »

Kerry's debt

Among the many strategic decisions facing Senator John Kerry in the coming weeks, one may hit closer to home than others, whether to use campaign contributions to repay the $6.4 million that he lent his campaign or pay it off over time using his own money.

A provision in the new campaign finance law requires Mr. Kerry to pay back the loan shortly after the Democratic convention next month if he plans to use campaign money. Although Mr. Kerry has raised millions of dollars in recent months, using those contributions could not only reduce the money he can spend on his campaign, but also perhaps draw Republican attacks.

"No final decision has been made," a campaign spokesman, Michael Meehan, said.

Mr. Meehan declined to elaborate on how Mr. Kerry would make his decision. The Massachusetts senator mortgaged his house in Boston in December, when his fund-raising lagged as he dropped in the polls. Fund-raisers say the move was a well-timed display of faith that helped the campaign survive its darkest days and signaled supporters that he was not giving up. But the decision, of course, left him with this debt. -- Kerry Has to Decide Soon on Repaying a Big Loan (New York Times)