Gov. Haslam Says Consultant Pay Was A Personal Matter, Not A Campaign Expense

Governor Bill Haslam faces mounting press after recent emails could suggest possible campaign finance laws violations. Credit: Governor Bill Haslam via Flickr

Governor Bill Haslam speaks to press after new emails suggest possible violations of campaign finance law. Credit: Governor Bill Haslam via Flickr

Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam says he didn’t break campaign finance laws by paying general consultant Tom Ingram from his personal bank account.

State e-mails released by News Channel 5 Investigates show Ingram took part in campaign-related planning retreat while being paid off the books.

Because state law requires campaign expenses to be reported publicly, Haslam’s out of pocket payments to Ingram have raised questions about their legality.

When asked why he did not openly disclose Ingram’s compensation, the governor said there was a personal line that didn’t need to be crossed.

“You could say, ‘Why don’t you also tell us what you paid your lawyer, who’s uh, the person managing the blind trust for you? Why don’t you tell us what your paying him?’”

Haslam says Ingram’s work has been non-campaign related, except for “a handful of conversations.”

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