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Texas senators use camapign money for living and office expenses

AP reports: Texas state senators spend more of their campaign contributions on living and office expenses than on campaign activities, a non-partisan group reported in a study released Wednesday.

The expenditures are legal under Texas law, but they are part of a flawed system that is riddled with potential conflict of interest for legislators, said Fred Lewis, president of Campaigns for People.

"Senators are trying to cope with a broken system that underfunds their staff, grossly underpays them for their public service and has few enforceable rules regarding the use of campaign contributions," Lewis said.

The group, which wants the state's campaign finance laws changed, found that senators spend only 40 percent of contributions on campaign costs. Of the rest, 35 percent goes toward living expenses, 20 percent for office costs and 5 percent for miscellaneous costs. -- Study shows lawmakers use campaign money for living expenses (A) via Star-Telegram.com)